tv C-SPAN Weekend CSPAN February 5, 2011 10:00am-2:00pm EST
status and wide to enter the united states but they did not have the proper papers. or there were people taking advantage of smuggling organizations of which there are many. there could be smuggling organizations from the far east into vancouver and into the united states are not uncommon. host: can folks find this report on the website-guest: at www.gao.gov./ host: thank you for your time today. tonight at 10:15, you can see the presentation live at the young america's foundation with dick cheney speaking in regard to ronald reagan's 100th birthday. that will be live on c-span for it for the program tomorrow, we will touch on the latest developments in egypt. we will have an hour-long
roundtable on policy with a democratic and republican strategist. from the to clock 10:00, a look at ronald reagan on his 100th birthday. all that, the papers, and your phone calls when "washington journal" comes your way at 7:00 tomorrow. we will see you then. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011]
>> the senate armed services committee an upbeat assessment thursday on the transition from a military mission to a civilian-led trans-- transition. it calls for all u.s. troops to withdraw from the region this year. a senate committee relations report released tuesday, american diplomats and other mission employees may not be safe in iraq if the u.s. military leaves by the deadline. this is 2:20.
it is based on a desire to provide our men and women in uniform and their families the support they need and the support they deserve. that goal makes the work of this committee truly rewarding. senator reed, senator tester, and i recently returned from visiting iraq. one of my main impressions was that the team of boofer jeffrey and general austin is providing the strong leadership needed to manage the critical transition over the coming year leading up to the 2011 deadline of withdrawal of all u.s. military forces from iraq. a deadline set by president bush and prime minister mawaliki in the agreement they entered into of 2002. i believe you two gentlemen are
the right team to lead that transition. on behalf of everybody, let me thank you for your service and the service of the men and women with whom you serve. those leaders agreed to form a government. the leadership was only partial. iraq still awaits the elections for the prime minister, the key cabinet ministers, the minister of defense, the minister of interior, and minister of national security as well as the resolution of issues relating to the powers of the national council on higher we were told
the responsibility in iraq was the drawdown of u.s. forces from the defense department to the state department, including training of the iraq police. to carry out these responsibilities, the u.s. embassy in baghdad anticipates that it will have some 15,000 to 20,000 personnel under its authority including two consulates, two embassy branch offices, five offices, security operations. whether this transition is successful will depend in no small part on whether the state department is provided the resources it needs to take on
what it needs to take on sustain those responsibilities. congress will need to do its part to ensure that the state department has what it needs to do all it can to help secure the hard-fought gains in iraq that have come at great sacrifice of american lives and treasure. significant security challenges remain in iraq. security incidents in 2010 were down from 2009 levels. terrorist groups, including al-qaeda in iraq continue to have the capacity to carry out high-profile attacks that kill dozens and wound hundreds of iraqis. iran remains a highly negative influence providing support to extremist groups. another security challenge is the instability arising from the unsettled situation in kirkook and the boundary dispute in the
north. u.s. forces have worked closely with the government of iraq and kurdish security forces to reduce tensions and facilitate the integration of these forces. our goal is to leave behind an iraq that is stable. during our trip we heard that in general the iraq security forces have made major progress and are capable of dealing with internal security pleaths threats to the iraqi people and are leading those operations. however, we also heard it will be sometime before the iraq security forces can provide for iraq's external defense. u.s. forces, iraq's training and advisory mission are focused on training the trainees as the transition occurs. u.s. forces continue to work with iraq's minute trizz of defense and the interior
the government of iraq needs to understand, iraq has significant oil revenue which will continue to increase. according to the latest quarterly report from a special inspector general for iraq reconstruction, iraq's efforts to attract foreign investment continue to bear fruit, in their words, and development of iraq's oil fields is making, quote, better than expected progress. we should work with the government of iraq to make available the equipment and training it needs for its long-term security, but iraq should not expect american taxpayers to bear the costs of its security needs. finally, an important issue for the government of iraq remains the security of christian and other religious l mean ortes. -- and other religious
minorities. people have suffered from suicide attacks and continued intimidation by violent extremist forces. these communities live in fear. large numbers of christians have either fled the country or uprooted to safer regions in northern iraq. the leaders we met explain with pride how iraq has been home to some of the earliest christian communities, and iraqi christians do not want to leave their country in order to feel safe. iraq had a long tradition of religious toll rens. -- tolerance. on our visit we urged the government of iraq to act with urgency to provide the security necessary to preserve these ancient christian and other religious minority communities and to protect those religious minorities. ambassador jeffrey and general austin, we know from our conversations in iraq and here, that you will continue to keep
the safety of the various religious minority communities in iraq as one of your top priorities in your discussions with the government of iraq. we look forward to hearing from our winds this morning, and we again thank you both for your service as well as those with whom you serve. senator mccain. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and let me also join you in taking time to welcome the six new members of our committee. i am confident that the work of this body will be enriched and enhanced by their contributions, and i join you in stating to them that our work has been bipartisan, and it has been an honor for me to serve with you as chairman of this committee. our bipartisanship is not devoid of passion when we occasionly disagree on an issue. [laughter] i want to thank our distinguished winds for being with us today.
i have had the wonderful opportunity to know the ambassador and general for many, many years. they are two great servants of our country. on behalf of this committee, we thank you for your service, and please convey to the brave men and women you lead the deep gratitude for their service that is felt by the american people and their representatives. i am very happy to focus on iraq. it would be unthinkable two years ago that we would reach a point that people in washington would increasingly be forgetting about iraq. that point has largely come, and as much as it represents of dividends of iraq, especially the -- of the surge, we disregard iraq. al-qaeda in iraq remains weakened. despite many large-scale attacks
against christian communities, overall levels of violence have been relatively low and steady compared to other areas. the country had a successful democratic election last year, and dee despite a payne painfully drawn-out period of political wrangling, a new government is now mostly formed in baghdad. as zrgses take place -- as demonstrations take place across the middle east, i don't think you will see those kind of demonstrations in iraq because the iraq people did have a chance to express their political will. despite iraq's progress, there remain serious questions about whether it will endure and what role our nation can and should play as iraq's partner to reinforced success. 2011 will be one of the most consequential years for iraq,
and for our partnership, a year that will largely shape whether the country continues to emerge as a self-sustaining democratic partner of the united states or whether iraq tragically stumbles, sliding back into civil conflict and violence and awe thore -- author tarne rule. -- authoritarian rule. but make no mistake, after sacrificing taxpayer dollars and nearly -- and thousands of american lives, the united states has a stake in iraq's success. we still maintain a significant capacity to influence events for better or for worse. if god forebid iraq's progress should unraff he will and the moment of opportunity is squandered, no one should think that the american people will be forgiving in holding their leaders accountable for that
failure. the security agreement signed by the current administration states all u.s. troops will leave iraq by the end of this year. this means we are approaching a decisive transition. i'll be blunt. i have real concerns about whether the civilian-led transmission that will take the lead once our troops are gone is sufficient to support iraqi needs and u.s. interest not because our civilians are not capable professionals, they most certainly are, but because of the huge and unprecedented challenges they face. in short, we are asking the state department to take on the mission of the u.s. military at a scale never contemplated before amid still fragile security conditions. many of the tasks now performed by u.s. troops will transition at great cost to civilians and contractors. some such tasks will cease to be performed at all. many relationships with key
iraqi leaders across the country will be hard to maintain for security reasons, and vital military-led programs from intelligence fusion to the peacekeeping tifts performed athe still-tense arab communities will be massively scaled back or effectively ended. no one should interpret my comments today as a lack of support for iraq and the continued involvement there. to the contrary, failure is not an option in iraq, and we must be prepared to bear the costs of success in iraq, including the costs of our civilian operations, which will be substantial however this transition plays out. congress cannot short-change this mission now. what we need, however, is a more forward-looking strategy. the new iraqi administration will govern the country for the next four years. what does it need tomb accomplish to set iraq down a
path of lasting success? how can our two governments align our resources in a common plan that consistently advances our shared goal. the emerge ystence of an iraq that can govern itself and sustain its own development with less and less u.s. assistance. then having the programs required to achieve them, how can we build the bipartisan support in congress to sustain a robust commitment to iraq? especially a commitment for what will increasingly be a civilian-led mission. i look forward to discussing these issues today with our winds. there is a place in iraq inhabited by iranian refugees called camp ashraf.
i am concerned about the we will fair and well being and security of these people. it has been under security by american troops. i hope we can address this situation in a way that we can ensure their continued safety. >> we share your concern about the group that you mentioned at the end of your comments. by agreement we are going to call on general austin here first. your suggestion, gentleman, that general austin begin and that ambassador jeffrey follow. general austin. >> distinguishes members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to testify with ambassador jeffrey this morning. i am fortunate to be partnered with mr. jeffrey in one of the
most diplomatic teams i've seen. i want to thank you for your support to our men and women in uniform serving in iraq and to our families here at home. i would like to spend a few minutes to give you my assessment on the scurnt security environment and the capabilities of the iraqi security forces and outliing what u.s. forces in iraq are focused on for the remainder of the year. the security environment in iraq has been improving over the last two years. most notably, the delay in fund frg march 2010. the iraqi security forces remained apolitical and performed admirably. they provided iraqi leaders with the time and space necessary for peaceful dialogue and compromise to occur. the commendable work on the part
of the iraqi security forces is paying off. today iraq has the most incloastclusive government in her nation's history and the security environment is the best it has been since 2003 t security events in 2010 were 25% lower than the previous year and that trend has continued following government reform. the threats to iraq stability will remain in 2012. suni extremist groups like al-qaeda will continue to target the government of iraq. the iraq security forces and citizens norn in order to garner media attention and in an attempt to demonstrate that the government cannot provide security for the iraqi people. shia extremist groups, likewise, will continue to target u.s. personnel. in our absence, the iraqi government and its interests --
and its institutions. while the iraqi security forces have a capability to confront sunni and shia extremist groups, they will have gaps in their capabilities in 2012. iraq will not be able to defend air sovereignty for sometime. they will v also have problems with logistics and intelligence with more complex training. the iraqi security forces will continue to develop their capabilities which will enable them to continue receiving modern equipment, conduct training on that equipment, and then conduct unit-level trading. the u.s. forces in iraq and the iraqi security forces have recently begun a collective training initiative which awlows entire battalions to go through a training cycle. this provides the army with the collective training necessary for their units to operate and has been made possible by the
much improved security site. this training is a great step forward toward improving their prophecy but they will still require much more comprehensive arms trading in order to create an external defense strategy. and with the time remaining, u.s. forces in iraq will continue to advise, train, and assist the security forces to narrow some of these capability gaps. we will also work closely with the u.s. embassy in iraq as we transition from a predominantly military-led to a civilian-led effort. we are dedicated to partnering with embassy teammates. the key to a successful transition is the need to fully resource the embassy to perform their tasks and responsibilities. we are developing the fiss of security operation that will fall under the embassy, and the
o.s.c. will provide oversight over all security cooperation in iraq and it will assume responsibility for the near $14 billion in mill tri sales programs that we currently have with the iraqis. it will also coordinate military education and training. this office will work hard and be dead -- dead indicated to closing -- and be dedicated to closing any security gaps. i am confident iraq can achieve its full potential if it stays on the track it is currently on. i would like to close my remarks by recognizing the great men and women serving in iraq and their families who are supporting them. while our soldiers, sailors, air force, and marines are serving over seas, our families are serving here at home. we would not be here today
without the sacrifices of so many. and without the unwaivering support from here at home. mr. chairman, members of the armed services, thank you for this opportunity to appear with ambassador jeffrey, and i stand ready to answer any questions that you may have. >> thank you so much. >> ambassador jeffrey. >> thank you for inviting us here to discuss the issues associated with the united states transition from a military-led to a civilian-led presence in iraq. we face a critical moment in iraq. we will either sfep up to the plate, finish the job, and build upon the sacrifices made or we will risk u.s. security interests, be penny wise and pound foolish, concede the area
to al-qaeda and other dangerous influences. we have an historic opportunity in a critical window to help rack emerge as a strategic partner and a force for tabblet and moderation moderation. the president has clearly articulated our partnership with iraq. we seek an iraq that is sovereign, stable, and self-reliant, with a government that is just, representative, and accountable. with a government that is able to assume its rightful place in the community of nations, and contributes to the peace and security of the region. the u.s. military have performs admirably, but they cannot forever. we need to have platforms to carry out key transitional migs for the next three to five
years. these include work throughout the area. will a small number of americans have been shown have to a have great impact. as general austin said to finish the job against al-qaeda and other terrorist groups and develop a core capability. to not finish the job creates the problem of what some call a charlie wilson's war with the insurgence of al-qaeda. al-qaeda is still capable of providing anxieties in the
region which could spiral out of control. along with the iraqis, the u.s. has played a -- paid a large price in this war with over 4,000 u.s. troops killed. while all u.s. government work in iraq is expensive due to the security situation, a robust civilian presence represents a significant reduction in expenditures. between 2010 and 2011 the u.s. military withdrawal reduced the bill to the taxpayers by $15 billion while the increase in state's budget was $2.5 billion. while funding needs will naturally increase because of the military to civilian transition, the overall costs will decrease dramatically.
moreover, u.s. development assistance to iraq is not open-ended. iraq has vast untapped oil resources. it will be a number of years before iraq will have meaningful oil revenue for its own budget. getting this done means we can transition from war zones to stability. i would like to thank the department of defense and general austin and his troops. i would like to express my admiration and humility in the commitment and sacrifice we see every day in iraq on the part of our civilian staffs, military members, iraqi partners as they risk their livebs lives for a cause they believe in, the iraq i have just finished describing. thank you again for the opportunity to appear before you
today. we look forward to working hand-in-hand with you and other congressional colleagues. mr. speaker, at this time i would like to submit our joint statement. >> senators portman and aiyat, we are devited you are with the committee. you talk about stabble and security and self-reliance. -- you talk about stability and security and self-reliance of an iraqi state, and that surely has been the goal. one of the threats to the
security and stability of iraq is the failure of the political leaders of iraq to reach conclusions in some critical issues. this has always been a problem of the some of the current political issues that are unresolved include the following -- an agreement to create a smat -- national policy headed by -- there is an agreement that -- headed by prime minister allawi. there is an agreement that a council be made. the positions in national security are still unfilled. there is no agreement yet on oil positive.
the division of oil revenues. these are huge issues that remain unresolved and i believe threaten the goals that we have and hopefully the iraqis have for themselves. can you comment on this matter? do you think it is important for them to get on with this? ambassador? >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> we are going to have a seven-minute round, by the way. >> it is vitally important that they finish the job of performing the government. they have taken most of the steps necessary, but you have outlined several of the remaining aissues that we have been pressing them on but more importantly they have been pressing themselves on. we have seen some progress in the last several weeks on the national council, and the two sides have basically agreed to everything but the modality of how to secretary dr. ayad
allawi. i was in discussion this morning trying to take the temperature of where we are on these steps. there are also some names that are floating on compromised candidates for both of those ministries that you mentioned. again, we are encouraged by what we've heard over the last several days, but the proof is in the putting and we have to see if they will pp finish the job. it is important that they finish the job and get on with the business of our government. and on the oil account, two positive developments. as with everything else in iraq, it moves forward in relatively small steps, senator, but it does move forward. the kurds and the other coalition policies that agree on
the 19-point plan that includes giving priority to a hydrocarbons law and a revenue-sharing law. in the meantime, prime minister allawi and the kurdish government have agreed on an interim step of allowing up to 150 million barrels of oil to flow out through the tush i. pipeline. this is a very significant development and gives us hope they will continue down that path. >> is the withdrawal of our forces as agreed to by president bush and prime minister allawi on track? >> it is on track. we just recently completed our planning process that will govern the remainder of our activities from now until the end of december.
we have issued operations order 1101 which again proscribes the major activities that will be conducted focused on strengthening iraqi security forces, reposturing our forces, and also transitioning responsibilities to the embassy, the government of iraq, and central command. we continue to synchronize that plan, and we're also synchronizing the activities of the embassy along with our activitieses as we go about executing the plan. >> thank you. >> is there any indication that iraq is going to request that any elements of our military forces remain beyond december?
>> we have received no such request, senator. we are working with the iraqis as the general said on the security elements of our post 2011 presence which will include a large o.s.c. element for security and police training. both of these are under the strategic framework agreement, which is the second agreement in 2008. it calls for broad cooperation across the spectrum of bilateral relations including specifically security. so we're working with the iraqis now on just exactly what the components of that would be, sir. >> do you expect any requests beyond that from the iraqi government. >> we haven't yet, sir, and i can't say what they will say in the future. >> we don't have any indication that such a request is going to be forthcoming as of this time? >> as of this time, there is no request on the table, and we want to see how they will meet their training and quipping needs with the program we set
up. >> senator i echo the ambassador's comments and i think he covered the entire gamut there. i would add anything to that. >> another threat to the stability and the security and the self-reliance of iraq is iran. can you tell us, ambassador, in your view, whether or not rein behavior in iraq represents a threat to their stability and to their successful transition to their own total sovereignty and what also is the suss september yibblet -- susceptibility to that influence or their destablizing efforts?
>> senator, as the president said many times, we are concerned with iranian behavior in the region, and in brute of nuclear weapons. in iraq, specifically, sir, we, first of all, spr to note that as a neighbor of iraqs, as a country that's suffered devastating losses by iraq -- gentleman senator the president said many times, we are concerned with rein behavior in the region. in iraq, specifically, sir, it is a country that's suffered devastating losses. there were a series of battles where prime minister maliiki took them on in 2008.
we are seeing signs iran has not given up support of these groups. it is troubling to us. the iraqi government, like any government, pays attention to its important neighbors. we are absolutely convinced this is a government that is nationalist in orientation and is fully aware of the threats to its sovereignty and will take the steps to protect it. >> they may be concerned about their neighbor, but is there a problem that iran creates for iraq with their current behavior? >> with iraq, the government has to face many pressing and long-term problems. one of which you just described. >> is one of those iranian behavior? >> it is not on the shot list at this time for the iranian government. >> is it on the long list? >> they are well aware of the potential for trouble, sir.
>> thank you, sir. it is great to have you here. senator mccain. >> thank you, mr. chairman. as is well known, i'm deeply concerned about this issue of complete u.s. withdrawal. general austin, i think that we would agree that the battle of flugia -- fallujah was a battle that has made use of the technology we have made use of over the intervening time. in the absence of the united states would the iraqis have the kind of capability that was vital in winning the battle of
sadr city? >> senator, certainly not. the capability i believe you are referring to is the capability to employ acquired targets and employ precision fires that limit collateral damage. >> in the words of general petraeus, we made them take a knee, right? >> absolutely, senator. >> and without the u.s. presence there, it would take a long time before the iraqis would have the ability to replicate that? capability? >> it will take some time for them to develop that, sure. >> the iraqis are interested in having an air force for obvious reasons. are they going to be able to build an air force without u.s. presence there? >> they do have a number of optioned to both acquire
equipment and ask for training from other nages. -- nations. >> they would have to hire equipment and then get trainers from other nations? >> that they would. >> would you agree, ambassador jeffrey, the highest priority for the iranian government this year is to prevent any change for the security agreement so that no u.s. froops will remain in iraq by january 1, 2012? >> senator, i can't assess with full accuracy iran's intentions. >> would you agree that it is the iranian government's highest priority? >> i would say it is a significant priority of the united nations to not have u.s. forces on its doorstep. >> how concerned are you, general jeffrey, about the
presence of u.s. officials that might occur after our withdrawal? >> senator, my highest priority as ambassador is the security and safety of my personnel. my people in a given week are the subject of one, two, three attacks between indirect fire and typically i.e.d.'s. we had an i.e.d. against one of our columns two days ago. it is a very big concern of ours. nonetheless, it is a concern we lived with since we started operating in 2003. >> resided in iran, left, and is back? >> the latest i heard is that he is back in iran, but it is hard to keep track of his going back and forth. >> and his followers are a key
element in the formation of the maliki government? >> they received 6,000 votes ought of more than 12 million cast. they have only 39 seats in the coalition, which is roughly 300 seats, and their role, which is relatively minor, in the government reflects their voting power. >> it also played a key role in the formation of the government when they swung maliki they were able to form the government. i am concerned about his followers and his close ties with iran and others, talibanny. -- talibani.
i will be very blunt. i am deeply concerned about that. i am also concerned, ambassador and general, the government of iraq has already released a lot of individuals who have been detained by the u.s. military. we hear reports that the prime minister has released many more as part of the political negotiations to form a new government, especially with the sadrists. are you concerned about that? >> i'm always concerned. >> is that always happening? >> there are a number of detainees routinely released because of lack of evidence or they may have served their sentence. >> do you believe some have been released because of the influence of sadr. >> i have no proof to confirm that. >> is it your opinion?
>> without proof, i would be hesitant to provide an opinion on that. >> knowing the kurdish-iraqi areas, like in kirkuk, there is a u.s. peacekeeping presence. what is your concern about the removal of that presence as far as uniting some conflicts between the two parties? >> our presence up there has provided a means to build confidence and enable the arab and kurdish elements to work together. and they have done -- the troops have done a magnificent job of working well together. the tensions -- there are in some areas tensions still remain.
and i think as we remove those combined security locations, i think that has to be carefully managed. at the end of the day, the presence there needs to be resolved politically, and that may take some time. >> i hope, ambassador, you will make some rem represent tages to the iraqi government concerning the the situation in camp ashraf and may i urge you to continue as the iraqi government in this difficult transition. there is going to be an ib increase here in the congress and we'll have to convince a lot of people of the importance of
sustaining and assisting a free and independent iraq as it makes this transition. i thank you for your service to the country. >> thank you, senator mccain. senator reed. >> thank you gentlemen for your service and the service of your colleagues, which, as senator levin indicated, we were there just a few days ago to see the challenges and the growth. i want to underscore something senator mccain said which is critical, and that is the need to maintain bipartisan support for an increasingly civilian-led effort. as the mission migrates from the department of defense to the d.o.d. budget to the civilian side, the state department, as it looks more like foreign aid than supporting troops in the field, the reality, which
senator mccain pointed out, in this environment, is going to be very difficult to sustain, and he has also pointed out, if we don't sustain this effort we have invested a lot of blood and lives and and material in an effort that could be frustrated. that would be a tragedy. as you pointed out, ambassador jeffrey, one of those charlie wilson moments where, what were we thinking? i think that is a central point and well said by senator mccain. the support for afghanistan is what, military-civilian efforts combined? do you have an idea?
>> on the civilian side, sir, it is roughly two-plus billion. that includes the assistance program, which is roughly half a billion dollars. and we are beginning to some moans from the police training program. as a complicated accounting. then the operations budget is 1.87 billion dollars. so if you add it all up, it is somewhat over $2 billion for the military. i would have to defer to general austin. >> general austin, what is your rough estimate this year? >> in fy-10 it was $72 billion. >> we have roughly $74 billion we're committing annually. when the transition is completed, what is the number that you need, mr. ambassador? >> we haven't quite finalized that for fy-12, senator.
what i can say, is the building blocks would be where we are now . we would like to take over the training and quipping program as a state department program. right now that's $1.5 billion. we would ask for less, but it would be a significant percentage of the $1.5 billion. the police training program is $1 billion a year. and the operations in the field taking over the security missions and the logistical missions, but particularly security missions that the military has been doing, perimeter security and movement security, on the order of half a billion or more a year. so if you add all that up, you would get a figure that i would rather not add up, but it would be about twice what we are doing now. >> can you add it up? you are better at math than i am. >> if i had to add it up, it would be over $5 billion. >> so we're going from $74
billion down to $5 billion? >> there would be some d.o.d. costs associated with the osci, senator. we don't know how much that would be because they would be doing the security and obviously some of the payment of those, but clearly we're looking at a 90% reduction. >> we're looking at a 90% reduction, which is good news, but the reality is unless we are ready to fund your efforts at the tune of $5 billion to $6 billion a year, you are going to have a difficult time sustaining the progress that we have made? >> i'm not going to sustain the progress that we've made in supporting the iraqi government. >> unless you have that money. >> what percentage of that is the state department's budget? >> it's between 5% and 7% of the state department's foreign assistance budget, the moneys that we would have for the
f.m.f., and so the uaiad, and then the police training. for the d.c. & p, if you strip out salaries, it is pretty big. somewhere between almost as high as 30%. >> so in some catagories, we're looking at 30% of the budget. >> so this is a huge amount of money. >> this would be probably the single biggest program in the state department budget in fy-12. >> again, let me reiterate. i think we all understand that when people migrate from the department of defense, keep the troops in the field, that is a category that's a lot harder to sell bluntly. we have to make that sale. i think that's its message i heard on both sides. let me interject another issue,
which is, i saw a competition on the d.o.d. side between assets for iraq and assets for afghanistan. at the same time you are trying to do this in iraq, your colleagues are trying to do the same thing in afghanistan. pull military forces out, turn this over to a civilian mission. what is your view? this is going to be a competition not only for money for your effort but also money for afghanistan's efforts, which means that we have the same dilemma there. is that an accurate assessment? >> basically it is, senator. there is one difference n a year i'll be operating without the u.s. military. my colleagues in afghanistan will not be operating without the u.s. military. >> another point. when you were there, the department of state and defense
had identified over 1,000 tasks that have to be transitioned or accommodated. some of them have to, you know, clear d.o.d. fingerprints -- clearing personnel, travel routes, et cetera, others are tasks that are subsumed. t.a.r.p. funding, et cetera. i think when you look closely at all these functions and the kind of support you are getting indirectly, sort of the -- you know, positive spill-over benefits from the military benefits, that that number of $6 billion plus that you suggested is probably an under-estimate. do you have an estimate, mr. ambassador? >> as i said, we try not to talk specific figures at this point. but in the order of magnitude of double what we're doing now is what we will be looking for in
fy-12. the support and activities at the military are doing, it is hard to put a figure on to that and how much of that would transfer to us, because it is apples and originals, and we have to pay combat troop salaries are d.o.d.-based. we get extraordinary support, billions of dollars of support from the military every year from everything from identification of incoming rockets to logical support, no doubt about it. >> thank you. thank you for your extraordinary service. >> thank you, senator. what are p.s.e.'s? >> personal security details. >> are these private contractors, p.s.e.'s? >> yes. >> what does the acronym mean?
>> they could be military or contractors for security. >> thank you. >> thank you both for your service. i think senator reed brought up some very good points. the nation needs to understand what is about to occur here. if you bring all the troops home, we all would like that to happen as soon as possible, you still have a country that is in a very early stages of development in terms of democracy. would you agree that iraq is an infant democracy at best? >> i would drop the "at best." they are in the solid infant category. >> just like with any other infant, you need to provide assistance in nurturing to make sure they grow up strong and healthy. that's the challenge forward, is that correct? take it from an embassy to a mature democracy? >> the iraqis appreciate our
assistance. there is an issue of sovereignty here. >> i'm not saying we're going to do it for them. we're going to help them if they want our help. >> it is in the strategic frame work specifically. political support. we of course support them in election monitoring and setting up electrics and in many other ways. >> does the general population want us to continue to be their partner in some fashion. >> the general population wants us to be their partner. >> does the military wants want us -- does the military wan us to train them? >> yes. >> so we have an iraqi navy, too. do they want us to help them in that regard? >> that's true. >> so we are not staying in a place where we are not wanted, is that a fair statement? whatever "staying" is? >> that's a fair statement, but most polls say the iraqi's population in general would like to see the military presence to
be withdrawn. >> i understand that. that goes back to what is penny wise and pound foolish from an iraqi-american point of view. to carry out your mission in 2012 without u.s. military security being provided, we're basically creating a small state department army, is that correct? >> i would have a problem with two words, senator "creating an army." i'll explain it. right now we have some 2,700 security contractors and many hundreds of state department security personnel. that figure will go up significantly, but an order of magnitude, but we already have -- the point i'm trying to make is we already have a large number of security personnel operating in iraq. .
thousands of americans and other people in on iraq try to provide assistance to that country? can they do the job? are you comfortable with them? >> i think that adequate security will be provided, provided the ambassador is adequately resources to litigate. >> is it your opinion that we do not need from a military point of view any troops in iraq in 2012? >> senator, what we are focused on now is abiding by the agreement. >> i know. you are advising congress. you are somebody we respect. you have been on the ground a lot. please put on the table what you see as reasonably necessary, or an insurance policy, for lack of a better word, where if you could construct a perfect scenario, what would you have
the scenario be regarded military involvement in iraq in 2012 and beyond? >> senators, i would prefer to avoid speculating on what we would be able to do, and what we could provide, because i think the iraqis would have to make a request, then we would, as a matter of policy, our government what -- >> our time is up, but if such a request were made that we were above to have military assistance to train our air force, help us develop better security for your people and hours, if such a request were made, would you be favorably disposed to say yes? >> if that is the policy of the american government. >> would you recommend to us to say yes?
>> senator, that is beyond my pay grade to make that recommendation. >> thank you. >> thank you, senator gramm. senator akaka. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. i want to welcome ambassador jeffrey and general austin to our hearing today, and thank you for your testimony is today, and your continued efforts to insure that iraq becomes a stable, self-sufficient, and democratic nation. i also would like to recognize the outstanding men and women you both lead in iraq, and we appreciate their sacrifice and hard work. ambassador jeffrey, in our transition we are looking at
many ways of bringing that about, and in particular, the prudential reconstruction teams have been in place since november, 2005, throughout iraq, and have worked toward building up prudential and local economies -- prudential and local economies. my question is, could you discuss the current status of the reconstruction teams as they handle their mission to our consulate office? >> yes, sir. we have gone from a total, including out liar post, of roughly 30, down to 16 right now. these are co-located, with the exception of irbil, with the u.s. military. they are embedded in the u.s. military units.
their combined military- civilian team's focus on medical assistance, rule of law, and the like. if they have been effective on the delivery of aid, be it serve, or our own creek -- quick reaction funds. what we are going to do, if we get permission, transfer four of those in mosul, herbal, kirk cook, and basra, in the two cases consulates, in two cases embassy branch offices. this also requires the iraqis to approve the embassy branch offices. they have approved the consulates. we also will keep the baghdad prt in the operation running out of the embassies. we will have five, and then we are looking at ways in various
other areas such as dallah and other areas that are important to conduct fly-in's or leverage the presence, to develop, if you will, lily pads, so i can move and get contact with the governmental folks so that we maintain the tremendous contacts and tremendous programs that we have had in places other than the five where we will continue to have a significant presence. >> thank you. we would like to continue oversight there in october of 2010. -- there. in october of 2010, there were 2007 hundred contractors in iraq. reports say they plan to hire
7000 more security contractors. ambassador jeffrey, how will you ensure that these contracts are fulfilled inappropriate manner, avoiding the types of problems that surfaced under the black water security efforts? >> senator, we currently have 2700 security contractors. we will go up to 5500, then our police training program will require some security as well, let's say the better part of 1000 more, and then osci, working through dod, will have security contractors as well. we are concerned about that given the blackwater to incident in downtown baghdad. if the state department, under secretary at kennedy, who is still in the job, did a report outlining all of the problems
that led to that tragic event. we have taken various precautions and various modifications, as have the iraqis. all of these security companies need to be registered with two iraqi ministries. they're under iraqi law. we, in addition, have a variety of new procedures that require, for example, a commissioned or full-time state department security employee to ride in every on a void. we have cameras to record everything that goes on. we track where they are. we have done special training and rules of engagement in cultural awareness. we have iraqi security forces traveling with us, and i am happy to report in thousands of moves in baghdad where we have done that since 2007, we have not had a serious incident. .> thank you
general austin, the u.s. position and iraq will change, there is no question, significantly as we draw closer to the end of 2011 and we deploy the remaining troops. what are the future plans for the bases and the facilities? is any equipment going to be handed over to the state department, given to iraq, or brought back to the united states? >> thank you, senator. actually, we will do some of all of that. we will transfer, and have transferred equipment to the state department to help in their future endeavors, and as they identify additional requirements, we will work with the leadership in the dot to
make sure we transition or transfer equipment as expeditiously as possible. we are also transferring equipment to the iraqi security forces. as we have drawn down from a much larger footprint that was over 100,000, to the foot print we have today, with 77 basis we operate out of. we transitioned, by the way, in september, from combat operations to operation new dawn. if we are at somewhere around 92 basis. we have continued to shrink our footprint somewhat, and in that process, we have continued to transfer equipment to both the iraqis, and again identified equipment that should be transferred to the embassy based upon their request. it is some of all of that,
senator. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much, senator, the. -- senator akaka. senator wicker? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i realize you are on the note -- a military man, you take orders, and you do not speak for yourself. you are under the command of the president of the united states, our commander in chief. we appreciate that. if you are going to implement the policies you are directed to implement. but, i assure you, it is all right for you to come before congress and give opinions as to your best judgment. if i think that is what senator -- i think that is what senator graham was unable to get to in his line of questioning.
we will have a number of of american personnel who will still be in harm's way in 2012. my question is, in your judgment, based upon your expertise, will our american personnel in iraq be as secure without u.s. troops as they would have been if troops remained present? >> thank you, senator. i think ambassador jeffrey would agree with me when i say this. because i am who i am, i always believed it can be done better with united states military. but, as you pointed out earlier, we are right now focused on achieving the objectives that have been laid out with the current security agreement that exists between our country and iraq, and that is where our focus has been. >> i understand there are other
considerations, and part of that is what the people of iraq want, what the government wants, that they have put in place. could you quantify on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the security of our personnel if troops remain, what would be your comfort level of their security without those troops there? >> senators, i would like to avoid trying to quantify any kind of assessment such as that. >> clearly, your opinion is our personnel would be less safe than if we had troops there. i think that is your judgment,
and you are going to implement a different policy, but that is your judgment, is that not correct, general? >> senators, again, because of who i am, i always believed that our military eds much value to any situation. i think that ambassador jeffrey, and his team, if adequately resources can provide for the security of the folks they will have working there. it can be done better with our help for sure, because again, we have a long history of doing these types of things. >> thank you. mr. ambassador, let me ask you this. we want to get your testimony complete. with regard to contract security personnel, your answer to senator akaka was one group,
2700 security personnel, another group of 5500, and then you mentioned others, but i did not get numbers there. >> thank you. i think this is an important point. we have operated with our own contract security in iraq under extraordinarily far worse conditions than we are now. when i was there last time, in 2004, 2005, it was total rock- and-roll. we were in basra, we were in hillah, and we were incurred, operating on our own. irkuke were in kirkca operating on our own. our security personnel doing very good job. because the military security
for the places we still will be located around the country is being withdrawn, we have to increase our security forces, both perimeter security and movement security. therefore, we are going from the current level, which is 2700 security contractors and roughly 300 state department security personnel, to some 5500 contractors, and augmenting somewhat the number of state department personnel that will be supervising them. in addition, the police training program will bring with it some additional personnel. >> how many will that be? >> i would say the better part of 1000. >> we have 5500, then 1000, then osi. isoss >> osci, which will be
providing training, they will require security as well, but i do not have a number on that. >> ok. you mentioned what the population of iraq want, with regard to continued u.s. presence. i know at a time there was extensive public opinion polling going on of the iraqi people. mr. ambassador, is that the case still? >> there is a good number of different polls that, of all of the time, done by various agencies, private companies, and the iraqis themselves. >> are you pretty to that information? >> we see all lot of it. >> based on that, the information you have is that a substantial majority of the iraqi people would like the
united states to continue with the security presence there, absent the military, is that correct? >> they want an overall relationship -- if i would not say a substantial majority, but it is much higher once in a relationship with us than the percentage that wants to have an american force presence. that typically is quite low, between 7% and 20%. >> ok, but with regard to the situation that we intend to have after january the first, is there majority support for that? >> i would have to check the polls, senator. it is a tricky question. >> they get tricky, even done inside the united states. >> it is particularly tricky in the middle east, where i have spent much of my career. they were tricky inside turkey.
essentially, yet all of these countries, there is a nervousness about countries having to close of relations with anyone, including countries like iran. the sydney-arab -- suny arab countries are nervous about relations with anyone because they have all had a history of being exploited by neighbors. the general reaction of the population is to be wherry. nonetheless, as we judge these things, taking that in our mind, we would say there is a general positive feeling toward relations with the united states in general that the program will have after 2012. >> thank you. and, thank you both for your service. >> senator ben nelson. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
but me add my appreciation for your service, the men and service -- men and women who served. i find the discussion about good, better, or best, in terms of security vary in iraq as to how we provided and which will work best, but the amount of our presence, and the nature of our presence is an iraqi decision more than it is ours. having said that, in the discussion about good, better, and best security, is the question not whether or not to the state department will with proper resources in be able to provide adequate -- resources be able to provide adequate security? >> that is one of the questions, yes, sir. >> we could do it better. we could do the bells and
suspenders approach. if i understand the desire to provide even more, and i appreciate that you feel the the. to do it better. he should feel that way. we should all feel that way. it is not about better, it is about adequate, and getting it done sufficiently to protect our presence in iraq as well. let's get it on the table, mr. ambassador. he said they have not best for any continuing presence at the present time, and this is a tough question because you do not have a crystal ball. do you expect that they will ask for may be some continuing military presence after the expiration date? >> it is a possibility. >> do you expect it? >> again, my crystal ball does not reach that far, senator. i expect them to want to talk more with us about their security needs, and how they can
be met. if this is a country with security forces of some 650,000. they have beaten and insurgency, and they are doing well against a continued, but still relatively strong -- small compared to the past terrorist threat. >> they probably have a reasonable understanding of their capabilities, and we would hope they have the reasonable understanding of their security capabilities at the point of departure. it is not unreasonable to expect that if they are inadequately resources in the security, that they might want to have additional help, but we're not anticipating that the present time. that is, perhaps, one of the plans we should have in mind. is that fair? >> we are preparing to provide that help. police training, fms cases and
funding, and that sort of thing -- the multitude of the security and military assistance of various forms that are required, a particularly to turn them into a foundational, conventional defense force, which they need to be, and are not right now, will require a good deal of help. how that helped is construed, whether it can fall into the program we have set out after 2012, or would require something more, is not something they have talked to us all about. >> this would cost to conditions on the ground at the time. is that fair? >> that is what would drive their condition -- drives their decision to talk to us, senator. >> in terms of turning over equipment, i have always been concerned about the fact that we do not want to be the kind of military that we are bought and
paid for by a foreign country. on the other hand, as we transfer equipment, are we finding ways for them to pay for the cost of that equipment, either at the current time, or with some future arrangement for them to pay us back for that equipment, rather than simply providing it and leaving it free of charge, general austin? hasome of the equipment been paid for and will be paid for. it depends on the category, but the answer to your question is yes. >> i know some time ago we entered into an agreement where when they were having trouble acquiring equipment, because of their own internal inadequacies and procedures, we actually acquired it on their behalf with their money. my hope is that we will be as
careful with the taxpayers' dollars and the transfer of equipment as we should be, recognizing that we are paying for a great deal of the war in to rock. it is a tremendous impact on our budget. it is not the driving force as to whether or not we continue to do what we think is right, but it is a factor, and i hope everybody will be focused on that as we create this transition. can you assure me, both of you, that not out of the goodness of our heart, but recognizing the importance to doing this in a good, sound, economic way that we will try to recover as much of our costs in that transfer as possible? ambassador? >> we have been pressing them to increase, and they have. if they spend $8 billion a year
on their security forces. that has been going up. the percentage of how much they put into the equipment purchased externally and how much we put into what has been rising in their favor, and will continue to do so. >> in addition to that, they have about $13 billion or so worth of foreign military sales cases. there are not only investing in their own future, but we are playing a large part in that. they are investing in our equant as well. >> this could be the third leg of that to recover in some of our cost as we make that transfer. it is consistent with the trend is, and we ought to make sure this is part of that trend. >> yes, sir. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> if i could clear -- clarify something, you said the percentage iraq is paying is
rising in their favor. you mean they're paying more? >> they are paying more. that means of the weapons systems they have been flowing into them, the percentage of the total cost they pay for has been rising consistently. >> when you use the term rising in their favor, it is rising in our favor. >> right. >> senators a yacht -- senator ayotte? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to commend both ambassador jeffrey and general austin -- general austin. i also want to thank the men and women for their tremendous sacrifice and the progress we have made in iraq. i wanted to ask the ambassador if you could think of another circumstance where the state department has had the security
responsibilities? he said we would have approximately 5500 contractors, and perhaps another 1000 security personnel -- where you have had that type of security and have had success in transitioning from a military security basis to that much security responsibility? >> again, back in 2004-2005, when i was there before, we provided essentially all of our own security. it was not as large as this program, but it was significant. the state department provide security for all of our personnel in pakistan while it is somewhat -- pakistan. i was involved in the transition on the military side. we turned over in saigon and a tremendous equipment delivery and security mission said in
february, 1973. >> ambassador, i believe you testified that when you were in iraq previously that it was sort of rock-and-roll in terms of why you were dealing with. one of the concerns -- what you were dealing with. one of my concerns is we do not want to put our personnel danger. i am sure you share those concerns. want do you -- what do you recommend? >> the assumptions i have made that we can do -- i would go beyond adequate -- that we can do security that i am comfortable with, based upon the continuation of the current security trends, with attacks down 90% from the high point in that era, with the iraqi
security forces on the job, they still have areas they need to be improved, and that exposes weaknesses, but there the our security, and we are the inner security, if you will. most of the time, they send off most of the threats. we worry more about bombs and snipers as opposed to pulled -- to assume-sized ambushes. if that were to change, and the security forces could no longer control large areas, i would begin a different circumstance and would have to consider options at that time. there are many options. again, i would like to wait until those circumstances arise, and i do not expect them to rise at this point. >> was that many contractors that you are currently relying on -- with that many contractors that you are relying on, are you
confident that there is sufficient oversight to address waste, fraud, and abuse with taxpayer dollars that are obviously funding the contractors? >> any large program and -- large program requires oversight. it requires people on the ground, a contracting representatives who follow up. we have active program at the embassy where under constant supervision by the chairman, the special inspector for iraq, our own inspector general's, military inspector general's, and our own internal controls and might deputy assistance, ambassador peter bodde watches over that. >> our forces in kuwait -- they are offering it logistical support in iraq and afghanistan
at this time. do you anticipate any enhanced force presence in kuwait to ensure in case there is an emergency and the iraq by their iranian aggression, or some other -- iraq, either by iranian aggression, or some other circumstance? >> senator, of the positioning of forces in kuwait falls under the the name of the central command commander general mattis, and the commander he has on the ground there, general webster. in support of our operations in iraq, i would not want to speculate that we have to increase the amount of forces in kuwait. that is not part of the plan as we look ahead here. >> thank you very much.
>> senator ayotte, senator webb is next. >> thank you, mr. chairman. ambassador jeffrey, general austin, i would like to see why you and -- by what like to see why and all the people working with you -- see why it and all the people working with you -- thank you and all the people working with you. we were worried, and were seen so at the time that this and never would harm the country's economy, blow the top off of the price of oil -- i recall when congress voted to go to war, in iraq, oil was $24 a barrel. it went up to $143.
today, it is about 100 two dollars. we were concerned this activity would empower rather than containing iran, that it would encourage greater activities of al qaeda, in a country where it had not been acted to any degree before, it had the potential sued the state -- destabilize the region, and most importantly, there were concerns that i shared a room above before the invasion that this invasion of their -- that i shared and wrote about before the invasion that this invasion award create the possibility of a long-term occupation by the united states in a part of the world where we should not be an occupying power. i think this last point has been the underlying premise of the number of questions that have been raised today about
what is going to happen to the military presence in iraq in the immediate future. i have read the sfa. i have read the strategic framework agreement. they're not airtight, as i think you know, in terms of the requirement for united states military with a drawl. if there are people on this committee and on the senate that have argued the united states should remain in iraq in the same way it has stayed in korea as a protection force. some arguments were made that we should be there for another 50 years. there really are two different questions when it comes down to whether our military should remain in iraq. the first is whether they are needed in the domestic terms, which is what a lot of this discussion has centered on
today, but the second one, and the most important one, is beyond this transition, should we, or are we discussing the notion of providing bases in a rock as a projection of force that could be -- as -- bases in a rock as a projection -- iraq as a protection force that could be used? ambassador, have you had any discussions on that level? >> we have not, but to go back to 2008, i was involved in the negotiation of these agreements when i worked on the national security council. the iraqis made it clear at that time, and it is in black and white in the agreement, summer between articles 24 and 27 -- some where between articles 24
and 27 that we are not to have permanent basis. that was the explicit understanding that the administration at the highest levels, and i was present for these deliberations, went into with that agreement. our presence would be solely to help the iraqi security forces and the general stability of the country. our belief, senator, after 20 years of having highs of 500,000 troops 1991, and lows of a few 10,000 troops with operation no. watch and southern watch was that securing a rack, and making it a relatively peaceful place that was not -- secure in iraq, and making a relatively peaceful place was a great security benefit in and of itself. therefore, we decided to keep
the forces on to finish the fight, if you will, and we think we are pretty close to their by the end of this year. if the iraqis have no intention of having us have bases and project power. that is not our intention at all. >> let me get a clarification from you. there has been a lot of discussion this week in the previous hearing on formulations thaton this one as well iraq is not at present capable of providing security against external threats. i assume we are keeping military forces in iraq to address that issue for some time, or the as part of the formula? >> -- that is part of the formula? >> under the current agreement, we are not going to keep forces in iraq after 2011.
when we will do, given the fact that iraq does not have a foundational, conventional defense, external defense capability, which it is just beginning to develop because its focus has been on internal security, which are going to continue our training and equipping program, which is expensive. fms programs, and fms programs said they have purchased for battle tanks, and army personnel carriers, and aircraft and other platforms -- we will be there with them helping them do this in a broad and extensive way, but at this point, not with combat troops on the ground. >> in an advisory capacity was independent units? >> that is the plan exactly. >> just so i understand, because it has been sometimes incited read the strategic framework
agreement, but i could provided for the record if necessary, but there was lose the language in the sense of a further agreement been possible if the iraqi government, for instance, decided they needed help beyond a period of time. >> in the first agreement, the security agreement, senator, there is an article that says that either side can ask to extend, just like either side can ask tooth terminate. in the strategic framework agreement, there is a section on security, section three. section 10 basically states that additional agreements within the framework of the strategic framework agreement can be set up to do one of the many purposes of the strategic framework agreement, which could be culture, energy, and it could be security. >> so, just to clarify the point
because my time is up, it is your understanding that as of , the formal11 commitment of the united states as combat voices -- forces per say, will have ended, and the transition will begin to advisory roles, correct? >> it is our plan to have a security relationship, senator, and quite policy -- quite possibly, follow our agreement under article 10 on how we would do that training function, which would be under 12 -- titles 22 as a security assistance organization as a port -- opposed to a combatant force. >> thank you, senator webb. senator udall. >> i want to associate myself
with senator webb's the initial remarks. he brings an incisive set of impressions and analysis to the decision leading up to the invasion of iraq. i know i served at a house -- in the house at the time and test many of the same questions. i know the chairman has been -- as many of the same questions at the time. i know the chairman has been involved. good morning to both of you. thank you for the hospitality that you provided when we were with you in october. general austin, thank you for your conduct military operations brief, and the way in which your service personnel showed us the country. a ambassador jeffrey, your hard work paid off. -- ambassador jeffrey, your hard work paid off.
we were privy to your meetings across the spectrum in a raft, and i know your analogy of mixing bitter tea with sugar so everyone can drink out of the same pot of tea pre held. congratulations. -- his belt. congratulations. i also want to it now is a partnership you have. it models the relationship that ambassador ryan and general david petraeus had proceeding you. it is key to the successes we wants to have. i know the challenge that you have in front of us. we were discussing that here today. the success will be dependent on many factors, many of which we have little or no control over, but, again, we are engaged in your leadership. it is very, very important i
want to move to -- important. we had a chance to travel, and the progress was significant. you suggest that aqi will remain capable. are there any conditions where public support will increase like we saw in those tough days? >> i will offer my thoughts first, and then offer the ambassador the opportunity to provide his thoughts. i do not think so, senator udall. i think the people do not want and what it brings to their country. they had a good look at that a while back, and a couple of years ago, they decided they wanted something different. so, aq does not enjoy the support of the people, and i do
not see them returning to prominence to the degree that they were a while back. i think people have seen better times. they want different things. they want a greater sense of security and the country, so i do not see it returning. >> i agree with general austin, sir. >> ambassador, again, referencing the image you continue to share with the iraqi leadership of bitter tea sweetened, the solders are now part of the ruling coalition government. sauder has returned back to around. is there any significance to those developments? >> as a general rule, senator,
it is good that all -- at this time in iraq, is not just our assessment from the outside, but it is the assessment of the iraqis that an increase of government that brings in all of the political actors, including the problematic actors, is a good thing to allow people to work out compromises and to work -- move forward. in that sense, the iraqis believe, including those that are suspicious of the movement, that them being the in the government is a good thing. many iraqis that i talk to are also quite pleased that their role in government is not particularly large. i think i was a stop there. >> yes. moving to another point, including senator nelson's
questions about the transfer of equipment, authorities, and emissions from the dot to the state department, i think we all it knowledge there will be some bumps in the road. could you help us understand if there is more we could do in the congress to help expedite this transition? also, given the eventual likelihood, which i think needs to be a certain likelihood there will be a similar transition in afghanistan, do you see a need for a set of authorities to guide such transitions, in other words from dod to the state, ambassador, and then maybe the general could add his thoughts? >> very briefly, it is not a question of authorities at this time, senator. it is a question of the funding. we need the funding. as we talked earlier, this will be a substantial part of the state department budget, but a
very small part of what we had been paying just one year before of overall from the federal budget for iraq. we are hoping people will focus on the latter point that it is a big chunk of the state department budget. >> if i could interrupt, for 30 seconds, ambassador, although the number 17,000 employees sounds large, it is a decrease from what i think was 85,000 personnel on the ground at one point in iraq? is that accurate? >> the military presence, i will leave that suit general austin -- i will leave that to general austin, but many times, the 15, 20,000 range we were looking at -- >> in that lunch, i think we
were drawing down significantly. >> the overall footprint will be a dramatic decrease of way over 90% from its highest point. >> when we were operating as a coalition force, senator, we have upwards of 160,000 total people in the country. we drew down to about 100,000 or so when the u.s. began to provide the majority of the assistance there, and then, most recently, as you know, we have drawn down to a little less than 50,000. that is a pretty significant transition over time. back to your question on the authorities, we do need additional authorities to fund the renovation and construction associated with the stand-up of the office of security corp.
we look forward to working with the congress to be able to obtain those authorities. >> thank you again for your services, and a look for to see you again in country, perhaps later this year. >> thank you, senator udall. senator manchin. >> mr. chairman, thank you. and to general austin, and ambassador jeffrey, thank you for your appearance. as one of the new people on the committee and new to the senate, i also want to see why for -- thank you for bringing us up to speed as quickly as you could. as a person that comes from the state of west virginia, that is extremely patriotic, we thank you for your service. sir, the attack on the 9/11, we knew at that time that al qaeda was our enemy, and that was our direction force, if you will.
who have you identified as our enemy today that we are fighting in the middle east, whether the afghanistan or correct, and what is the strength of the force of that any? -- afghanistan or iraq, and what is the strength of the force of that enemy? >> iraq remains a very complex environment. if there are a number of elements at play in iraq that oppose not only our efforts, but most importantly, the government of iraq's efforts. if we have spoken about tighter earlier. -- we have spoken about al qaeda earlier. they are much diminished in terms of capability his we look at it today as opposed to what it was a couple of years ago. forces have had a tremendous impact in reducing the capability of the network. we have taken off a number of their senior leaders of the
battlefield. if we have reduced their capability to finance themselves. we continue to place pressure on al qaeda. >> what is the number, sir, just for my information, as to the number of strength? 10,000, 5000, 100,000? >> i will take that question for the record, because i want to make sure we are accurate, but is in the several thousand, but certainly not 10,000. >> ok. >> again, their ability to do what they have done in the past is somewhat diminished. having said that, they do have the capability to conduct high- profile attacks, and we have seen that most recently during the are burning celebration here, as we -- abderdeen celebration here. we expected al qaeda would try to attack some of the pilgrims, and they did.
there are also a othersunni insert -- other sunni insurgent elements whose focus currently is on u.s. circuit -- forces. we believe if we are no longer there they will turn their forces on the government. urning to the shi'ah extremists, there are three we focus on on a daily basis. the no. 4 has a lot is a couple of thousand. -- number for hezbuloah is a couple of thousand. it remains a complex
environment. each has their own focus. there is no question in my mind, that if we are no longer there they will turn and focus on the government of the iraq. >> again, just trying to get a handle on this, the amount of forces we have in the middle east right now is at what level? 100,000? >> in the entire middle east? >> iraq, afghanistan? >> i think there are about 98,000 troops in afghanistan, and as you know, our current footprint in iraq is less than 50,000, a little bit above 47,000 currently. >> so, almost one of the 50,000, and we have identified not that many thousand enemies. >> right, and of course we have forces in other parts of the middle east as well. >> for those of us that do not
have the military experience, and us being such a technology, military might, we have such a presence with such few enemies identified. >> i understand the question, senator. i would say that when you look at the numbers, it could be misleading to just compare numbers of friendly forces to numbers of enemy forces. you have to take into account the type of operations, the type of warfare that you are conducting, and the types of things that we are doing in both iraq and afghanistan are very, very difficult operations. currently, in iraq, we are focused primarily on devising, training, assisting, and equipping the security forces. we are partnering in counter- terrorism operations, but we
shifted our focus from combat operations back on the fourth of september. >> what differences do you see from the soviet war they had with afghanistan and the war we are fighting? >> i would refer to general david petraeus, and his leadership to really provide those comments. >> they had overwhelming forces in superiority similar to ours, correct? >> there have been a number of attempts to compare what the soviets did to what we are doing, and some people would draw a parallel, and others not. i think we are taking a different approach to what we are doing there in terms of protecting the people and working with the people. so, it is very difficult to draw direct -- to make a direct comparison. >> ambassador jeffrey, if i may,
there has been a tremendous amount of resources that the american people have invested into the war in the middle east, especially in the iraq and it is a tremendous amount of resources that could be extracted and in the development of the oil fields in iraq. it is hard for a lot of west virginians and americans to understand. is there a return on that? we are all in with nothing in return? >> senator, it is a good question and it is a question that is both above my pay grade and a question that every single citizen need to look at. the logic of what we have been doing since world war ii and everything i have been involved then flows from that. if we can maintain -- maintained in a national security freedom of trade, promote democracy, we
won't ever have to go through something like what we went through in the first half of the last century. the world wars, the advent of the nuclear threat. while it is in direct, that brings tremendous benefits to the american people and to the rest of the world. it is not a zero-sum game. it is not that we benefit at the expense of many people on the periphery. everybody benefits to get there. the system is stable and we are able to deal with the threat to it. what we're doing in the middle east is dealing with one of the threats to the system that has been in place for the last 60 years. >> we get, as a country, in our general fund, it gets no return at all on the investment we're making. that will be turned over to the private sector? >> as i said, we as a nation benefit tremendously from
international security and not having to spend up to 20% on the military. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i have other questions i will submit. >> i want to join in thanking both of you and the men and women who served, for your service, and to save particularly to you, general, many of your soldiers and others who serve in our military are from connecticut and have been to iraq not just once but twice, and some three times in two hours of service. i would guess that very rarely in our country's history have so many individuals born so much of the burden, so few of the total number of people who live in this country are citizens, born so much of the bird and militarily for this country.
to you, ambassador, my thanks on behalf of connecticut and our country to the members of the foreign service who are in not only iraq, but other dangerous places in the world. we have only to look at today's headlines to see how dangerous those places are to civilians as well as military. i want to focus my questions on an area that has not been covered, and perhaps with seem to be outside commit to close with jurisdiction, but i think they're relevant to the transition you have been describing, the economic progress of iraq, which, in the long run, maybe in the short run, will make possible its funding for the continued protection of its own citizens, and perhaps, ambassador, you could give us your analysis of the progress that has been made
economically, the prognosis for iraq making further progress, and thereby funding some of the activities we have been describing today. >> certainly, senator. it's a time roughly the level of the republic of the condo. it is a very poor country today. this is the result -- although it is naturally a rich country, not just in oil, but agriculture, an educated population. this is the result of horrific leadership by saddam hussein and some of his predecessors over decades, repeated wars, and internal turmoil. the book of the economy, over to -- the bulk of the economy, over
2/3, is in the oil industry. we anticipate that oil production totally will be up perhaps as high as 2.6 million barrels. that is equivalent to a little more than kuwait or the uae and a little less than iran. by the end of the year with exports well over 2 million barrels a day, that is the main foreign exchange earner. the non-oil economy is growing at a rate of about 8%. the problem is that -- thus, over time, that will begin to deal with the unemployment problem. right now, we have 18% unemployment. it is very high and has a security dimension as well. next to unemployment, there is a higher level of underemployment, particularly of young men. that is worrisome to us.
it is one of the targets of the many programs we have done through programs. in terms of the orioles, as i said, the iraqis have had success with the international oil companies in increasing up to 10% of the output of these fields. this could go up as high -- excuse me -- as 6 million barrels up to 8 million barrels a day, some people say higher, putting it in the range of saudi arabia. there are major, major breaks on such developments. first is the infrastructure. it will be slowed down in terms of continuing to export their additional production. they have to prepare the offshore terminal that cannot complete until the end of this year at best. they will have before the major improvement to the internal storage tank and pipeline infrastructure that gets the oil
from the fields to the terminals. they are going to have to repair the northern pipeline that goes to turkey if they want to get that over 7,000 barrels. that will take them an awful lot of their oil learning. it will have to be poured back into repairing infrastructure in order to prime the pump. likewise, the oil companies are on cost-plus contracts and are starting to recover costs. much of the increased production profits are going to go to covering the cost of the oil companies rather than improving the iraqi budget. it will be a number of years before we see a significant impact on the iraqi budget of these increases. the very economic activity associated with that, and a general slow improvement in the economy, augurs well for the next five years if we can get over the remaining security and economic problems. >> at what point do you
envision that the iraqis themselves would take over a greater share of funding their own security? >> there right now funding the vast majority of the security, $8 billion a year. our program is about $1.5 billion. it was asked for in the program. we have about a billion dollar police training program. right now, it is $2.5 billion, plus the cost of the military being there. within a few years, our programs will basically terminate. they will be on the rhone and they will be in a position where they can continue at that level. >> what is the current level of security in iraqi oil fields, and its production and output facilities? >> the security of them is provided both by iraqi forces -- the outer perimeter. the inner perimeter is the security companies themselves.
they hire private security contractors to do the job. there are many of them operating in the private sector. there's overwatch by general austin's people, who coordinate closely with the oil companies and the iraqi security forces in terms of intelligence-sharing and improving capabilities of iraqi forces. you have three separate levels of security, sir. >> thank you very much. my thanks to both of you to your service -- for your service to the country. >> senator blumenthal will have around two. i just have a few questions. general austin, you were reluctant to speculate as to what your recommendation would be if there were a request from the iraqi government or any military support beyond the december date. my question is the following. it relates to that question.
it is a question that his asking your personal and professional military view from a military perspective as to whether or not you agree with the current policy of the administration to remove all u.s. military forces from iraq by the end of this year. >> senator, the agreement that i think we are referring to is between our country and the government of iraq. that agreement says that on less a request is placed -- is made by the iraqis to extend the agreement, or a request for assistance is made, our mandate is to reposition all forces.
we are on track to do that. i think, certainly, if the iraqis decide that they want to -- they need further assistance , and a request is made to our government, then i think secretary gates has been clear. he has said we will consider that. that is the policy in the domain of our leadership. i really would not like to speculate. >> i am not asking you to speculate as to what would happen if there is a request. i am asking for your personal, professional military view on whether or not you believe that we have the correct policy now, which is to remove all of our troops, combat troops, from iraq by the end of this year. >> i think -- >> that is a question which you are obligated to answer under
the commitments you have made to this committee and under our rules. >> right. thank you, senator. as i said earlier, i do believe that ambassador jefferies and his team can provide adequate security for their elements that they will have remaining. i do believe also that it can be provided better with the help of u.s. forces. i also believe that, as i stated earlier, the iraqi security forces will have gaps in their capabilities to defend themselves in the future. certainly, if they request, and our government agrees to provide assistance, then i certainly think that is absolutely the right thing to do.
>> you say it is always true that our troops can provide better security. as a military man, that is understandable. but that is not my question, whether we can provide better security and contractors to provide. my question is, what is your personal and professional military view as to whether or not we -- our policy is correct to remove all of our forces as provided for in that agreement by the end of this year? if you disagree with that policy, you had better say so right now. >> my personal opinion is, again, i think the iraqis will require further assistance. >> military combat assistance on the ground after the end of this year? >> assistant to develop their capabilities. . that could be training. that could be equipment. >> that could be training, equipment.
>> i am asking you beyond that. i am asking you whether or not our decision, president bush's decision, to implement by agreement to remove all of our ground forces by the end of this year is the right decision for us to make. or, do you believe it is wrong and we should offer to keep our troops there, whether or not we get a request, that we need to keep our troops there? >> i think we should only offer to provide assistance if requested by the iraqi government, senator. >> your recommendation would be if there were such a request, you know what that would be right now? >> it would be based upon the things that they request it assistance for -- they requested assistance for. if that is combat training, training more assistance with
logistical support, whatever it is, it would be my responsibility to look at what is being asked for and what we agreed to do, and then provide assessment to my leadership on what that would require in terms of forces. >> i will ask you that question again for the record, because i think it is incumbent on you to give us an answer to the question i asked. i will ask it for you for the record and you can decide whether or not to respond to that question that i asked you. ok? >> yes, sir. >> there is another unresolved issue that is the future of a group at camp ashraf. it is an iranian dissident group. i want to know whether or not you believe that the government of iraq has the obligation to
provide adequate protection for these people, and whether or not they are doing it, and whether you are confident that they're providing adequate protection, that there will continue to do so after december. >> they do have obligations under international law and in is the civic written agreement with us from 2008 to both provide adequate humanitarian protection and care of these people and not to force them to go to a country where they could legitimately expect to be mistreated. the iraqis generally are providing adequate security and protection for these people. we have had a number of unfortunate incidents. we are on this. the united nations and we go up there every week. we are in constant contact with the iraqis. we talk to them about this all
the time. >> how confident are you that they are going to provide protection after december? >> i absolutely think that they will continue to provide -- i mean, there are no u.s. forces there, senator. i don't think that whether we are present or after we are gone, that will change their position. the international community has certain basic expectations of all members of the international community. one of them as not to mistreat people in these conditions. >> can you give us a confidence level? are you very confident they are going to provide protection? >> i am somewhat confident. i am confident a on a scale of not confident to very confident, i am confident. >> on a scale? >> confident would be one level below very confident. >> gotcha.
on the question of violence against religious minorities, we met with leaders of the iraq christian community. they are very concerned. give us your assessment of the situation, but also whether or not iraqis are training units that are comprised of these religious minorities who can be deployed to the areas where they come from and where their respective communities reside in order to provide security. can you give us an answer to both of those questions? >> i will take the last question first. the prime minister has directed that 500 iraqi christians be hired and incorporated into the minister of interior to provide additional assistance in protecting the christian
neighborhoods. >> and villages and communities? >> that is right, senator. these 500 will be really employed across the country from mosul, in baghdad, and other places. that hiring process is taking place. initially, there were some applicants that were above the age limit. the prime minister has come back and offered an age waiver for those applicants, but we expect to see them on-board in about a week or so. >> ambassador? >> senator, on my list of things that make me optimistic, i would say the reaction across the board in iraq to the attack on the church of the 31st of october is one of those things that make me feel best about the
future of iraq in terms of an inclusive society that can deal with violence and diversity. everybody across the board has been magnificent in outreach. they follow that up with concrete actions. we have seen, unfortunately, a number of major attacks, particularly by al qaeda, since that time, but no major attack has been conducted successfully on a christian facility. al qaeda would like to do more, but christian facilities are getting a lot of protection. it is also the sincerity and the depth of the reaction of people from all religious groups and iraq. a part of the community by all of the other communities in iraq. that is a good model for people in other places. >> i hope that you will keep that real concern on the radar
screen. there might be good intent, but they're also having to deal with people who have ill intent and malicious intent. they will have to put resources in their to implement their intent to carry out what you say is their belief that there's a history there of tolerance and precipitation by the christian community, that the leadership, you believe, want to protect. they need to put resources in order to carry out that content because of the threat that exists. we will stand adjourned. thanks again to both of you for your testimony and for your service. we hope you will pass that along to the men and women with whom you work. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011]
>> former vice president dick cheney is the featured speaker at the closing banquet marking the anniversary of the birthday of president ronald reagan. live coverage from the reagan ranch center in santa barbara california begins tonight at 10:15 p.m. eastern here on c- span. >> i will not make age an issue of this campaign. i am not going to exploit for political purposes my opponent 's youth and inexperience. >> look alike and presidency of ronald reagan online at the c- span video library. >> a senate homeland security committee report released thursday blamed the army and the fbi for not doing enough to prevent the 2009 fort hood shootings that killed 13.
it criticizes the fbi for failing to notify the army about major nidal hasan views on his lawn. the army is accused of failing to identify and respond to this change in behavior. the committee conducted its own investigation. chairman joseph lieberman and susan collins prevent -- present the findings. this is 35 minutes. >> thanks to everyone for coming. senator collins and i are releasing a report on the fort hood terrorist attack that killed 13 people and injured 32 others. this is a copy of the report, which i believe has been distributed. we are proud of the report and grateful to our bipartisan staff that carried out the
report, which we embrace today. the staff was led by mike alexander and his team. the minority staff director was a full partner in this endeavor. senator collins will name others in her statement. they all worked long and hard. the most important point is the product of their labor is the most comprehensive understanding yet of the massacre at fort hood and enables us to make massive -- recommendations for the fbi about how they and we can work together to better combat radicalization of violent extremism from people like the $inside america and to prevent
anything like the murders at fort hood from happening again. throughout our investigation, the victims of this attack, their families, and their families, have weighed heavily in our minds because the painful conclusion is that the fort hood massacre could have then should have been prevented. growing embrace of violent extremism in the years before the attack that should have caused them to discharge him from the u.s. military and make him a subject of an aggressive counter-terrorism investigation. two associates of walter reed army medical center called him a
"ticking time bomb. a supervisor said he was "our worst." instead of discipline in him, they inexplicably promoted him. in my opinion, they suggested the evidence of his radicalization showed a knowledge of islam that could benefit our military and our country instead of showing that he was a clear and present danger to our military. the suspected terrorist was involved in anti american activities. he was himself the subject of a major ongoing fbi terrorism investigation. the fbi ought to not to identify this individual. the media reached the conclusion that the individual was anwar.
this was and not one of just thousands the straight pieces of evidence that comes to the fbi. this was a serious piece of evidence required serious investigation. what followed was a lackadaisical investigation of hassan by the fbi, coupled with the internal disagreements and a failure to use the analysis that led the bureau to contribute to the government's failure to prevent the attack at fort hood. in other words, the fbi actually had information that a member of the united states military was in communication with a target of their own terrorist investigation and did
not pursue its investigation of that lead or notify the defense department defense department. for three months now, we have been in difficult and often frustrating negotiations with the law enforcement and intelligence communities of our government and over their proposed reactions. -- reactions. -- redactions. some of our objections have led to withdraws of request for reductions, but we still believe that some of their redactions are unjustified. we are confident the remaining ones do not diminish our findings or recommendations. with that said, let me describe some of the evidence we have found that should have flashed like red warning light.
-- lights. first, let me talk abut the department of defense. from 2003-2009, when hassan was a psychiatric resident at walter reed, he suggested that revenge might be a defense for the terrorist attacks of 9/11. he openly sympathize with violent islamic extremists and defended osama bin laden. he justified suicide bombers, said u.s. military operations represented a war against islam, stated that one of the risks of having muslims in the military was that they might commit fratricide of their fellow service members, and publicly said that he had an allegiance to his religion that was greater than his allegiance to the united states constitution, which, as a military officer, he was sworn to uphold.
to me it is frustrating that someone who expressed such radical opinions was not discharged. frankly, to me, his words made him not just a ticking time bomb, but a trader. -- traitor. the officers who kept him in the military and moved him along knew full well of his problematic behavior. the officer who later decided to deploy them to afghanistan admitted that they were sending their worst. their most profound reason for not taking action against him was because he could provide a profound understanding of the nature of islam. his report -- his report were
sanitized. they tried to turn his radicalization into a virtue, as if he was benefiting the u.s. army with his radical believes. -- beliefs. for example, an evaluation report from july, 2007-june, 2008 said the the role of culture and faith in the context of terrorism has "the extraordinary potential to inform military policy and strategy." let me now turn to the fbi. the fbi under director muller has made substantial progress since 9/11 in turning itself into america's lead counter- terrorism organization. in this case, unfortunately, the fbi also had the opportunity to take action that would have prevented the fort hood murders, and failed to do so. if the counterterrorism task force in san diego had flagged
initial communications with the suspected terrorists that i referred to for review, and transfer those communications to the fbi's joint terrorism task force here, it would have bennett delivered to walter reed. it would have been delivered to walter reed. the washington task force waited three months before producing a cursory reported that the mall for hours to write. the report explained his communications in -- it took them all of four hours to write. that report explained his communications. the fbi inquiry was limited, focused only on whether he was engaged in plotting a terrorist attack, not whether or not his
communications might be evidence that he was radicalizing violent islamic extremism in a way that could well lead to an attack. the fbi conducted a superficial inquiry and ended it prematurely. the san diego task force was upset with the way washington handled the case, but they too dropped the matter. fbi headquarters, specifically the national joint terrorism task force, never got involved in the investigation, although they were responsible for overseeing the bureau's' counte- terrorism work. as we say in our report, this attack was a warning that the transformation of the fbi remains a work in progress but must be accelerated, considering particularly the growing threat of homegrown and terrorism.
are invested--- our investigation reaffirmed the following conclusion. we reach the following, fundamental conclusion in the seminal report from the summer of 2004. america's economy today is not terrorism or a particular terrorist organization, or a particular religion. the enemy is the ideology, the political ideology of violent islamic extremism. it takes the remarkable work of america's military organizations and personnel. the ideology that inspired 9/11 and other attacks around the world continues to motivate individuals to commit terrorism. that now increasingly includes
americans, inside and outside america. people we referred to now as homegrown terrorists. we must take strong new steps urgently, and with the same sense of purpose we all felt following the 9/11 attacks, to identify and combat the ideology of violent islamic extremism and to prevent terrorist attacks against americans which that ideology causes. in our report, briefly, we make the following recommendations. the department of defense policies must finally explicitly describe and confront violent islamist extremism. the department of defense can no longer subsume that reality with a vague, inexact and politically correct terms like violent extremism or workplace violence. it is violent islamic extremism. second, our military must clearly differentiate between
violent islamic extremism and protected religious observance, particularly by muslims. that way, the thousands of muslim americans who serve our country honorably in the american military every day and in other ways will be protected from suspicion for practicing their religion. military employment evaluations and personnel records must accurately in candidly describee performance and behavior, or military personnel will pose threats. the fbi field offices must be brought more effectively under headquarters leadership. the fbi headquarters never step into the dispute to ensure that the evidence on hassan and
received the urgent attention it deserved. the fbi it needs to strengthen communications with other federal, state and local agencies. the department of defence was not informed of the inquiry, even though a service member radically -- a service member radicalizing violent islamic extremism clearly pose the threat to our military and our country. the fbi should take steps to make sure that the large number of intelligence analysts it has hired since 9/11 are used effectively. this was not the case with regards to hassan. finally, our government must develop a more comprehensive national strategy to counter the threat of radicalization to islamic extremism.
we have not adequately define the roles and responsibilities of agencies of our government and other institutions of our society that must effectively counter and radicalization to violent islamic extremism in our country. of course, that work must be done with leaders of the muslim american community. 13 people were killed at fort hud. -- fort hood. to honor their memory, we pledge to use this report and its recommendations as a blueprint to ensure that appropriate reforms are adopted quickly so that the next human ticking time bomb will be identified early and defused before a in another -- before another deadly detonation. we believe this report and its recommendations are particularly timely given the dramatic increase in home run terrorist -- homegrown terrorists plots against america and americans over past few years.
finally, we are submitting this report to the director of defense, director of the fbi, the national security director,r ght have prevented his attack were not taken. detecting a lone wolf can be difficult, but in this case, the fact is that both the fbi and the army were aware of major hassan. this is not a case where a lone wolf was unknown to the fbi, and then to the military
officials -- unknown to military officials until the strike. that is the tragedy of this case. major hassan was known to both the fbi and the army. this was an american military officer, known to have communicated with a terrorist suspect under active investigation by the fbi. a military officer whose radical extremists them was increasingly -- extremism was increasingly evident to his colleagues and to his superiors. most disturbing to me are three failures. first was the failure of the department of defense to act on his radicalization by at least
in disciplining him or even discharging him. i want to point out that those corrections and that should have been taken under existing personnel and extremism policy. is it increasing extremism was well known to his supervisors -- his increasing extremism was well known to his supervisors, as was his poor performance. he traced a clear path toward radicalization in plain view of his fellow army officers. indeed, as the chairman has pointed out, his revelations of his violent ideologies disturb
ed his colleagues to the point that two of them separately described him as a ticking time bomb. yet, despite all of these indications, despite the clear evidence, the army took no action, laying the foundation for what would be a cursory investigation by the fbi which relied, in part, on his inadequate and misleading officer evaluations. the second finding that is most disturbing to me was the failure of the joint terrorism task force to share with the army the fact that hassan was communicating with a known terrorist. in this case, they did not live up to their potential and acted instead as another stove pipe
instead of communicating vital information. third, in my judgment, was so wrongfully the inexcusably inadequate investigation conducted by the washington joint terrorism task force. as the chairman has pointed out, it was about a half day, four hours, that is all the time that the washington jttf spent investigating whether a military officer, in communication with a known terrorist suspect, a it amounted to a national security threat. additional investigative action was not taken even when the jttf responsible for forwarding the lead pressed for more
action. this hasty decision cost the government its last best chance to identify the threat posed by the major. this eliminated the opportunity to potentially prevent the attacks. let me just make a few other important points. our investigation revealed that there were no legal restrictions that incumbered the investigation of major hassan. you may recall that at first, administration officials pointed to restrictions that they said made it difficult to conduct the investigation. what we have found is there were no legal restrictions that
hindered that investigation. similarly, there are no legal restrictions that prevented the sharing of investigative information on hassan, particularly his communications with the known terrorist suspect with the army. there was no reason that information could not have been communicated. third, hassan's behavior and declarations at walter reed were not first amendment protected activities, and they went far beyond an academic debate. it is clear that the fbi has made great progress in the focusing on counter-terrorism since the attacks on our country nearly 10 years ago, and
the fbi has experienced some successes for which we give them credit, for which our nation is grateful, but it is equally clear from our yearlong investigation that much additional work is needed to truly transform the fbi into a counter-terrorism effective organization, and much more needs to be done by this administration to name the enemy that we face, and to develop strategies to counter it. thank you. >> thank you very much senator collins. thank you, once again, for your partnership and for the role our staffs have been able to play. this is a real threat to our
security. we will take questions now. >> senator, based on the litany of failures and missed opportunities, what do you say directly to the families of the victims at fort hood? 32 people wounded. >> this is heartbreaking, because the painful conclusion of our investigation is that the massacre carried out by hassan at fort hood in november of 2009 could have been prevented. what can you say to the families of people who were killed there, other than to say that, having found what we have found, that this was a preventable attack, that we will do everything we can to push the relevant federal government agencies to do everything they can urgently to make sure that nothing like this ever happens again. the fort hood massacre resulted because of what i would call a
tragedy of errors. for a host of various reasons, people just totally failed to act in a way that, as you look back at the evidence with the clarity of hindsight, just shouts out, stop this guy before he kills somebody. he was not stopped. >> i would just echo the chairmen's comments. we kept in mind the victims and their families throughout this investigation, and it is why we kept pushing for word, and it is -- pushing forward, and it is why we kept demanding information, why we chose the very unusual step of actually issuing subpoenas, because we did want to thoroughly understand what happened and
make sure that we are truthful with the family is about what -- with the families about what happened, and that we put in place effective reforms to greatly lessened the chances of such an attack happening again. >> has anyone been fired for the behavior that was mentioned in your report? >> i do not believe anyone has been disciplined or terminated because of the failures mentioned in this report, and that is something that i want to hear about from both the department of defense and the fbi that we are sending the report to. it was not evil intent on the part of people in the federal government, it was just negligence, failure to perform in a in duties in the the way we -- perform the duties in the way we have a right to expect them to do.
>> that is very disturbing. the department of defense has told us that they are waiting until after the legal proceedings against major hassan are completed. i expect and hope that we will see action and that time, but that is a long time. >> i will say briefly, if you're interested in this part, there were two arguments made. one was that we had to be careful not to disclose information we had that would compromise an ongoing counter- terrorism investigation. we do not want to do that. the other thing was that because there is an ongoing prosecution of hassan in the military justice system, we had to be careful not to affect the prosecution. we felt and we still feel today
that we were not about determining guilt or innocence on november 5th when this occurred, in other words, the murder case. we were trying to figure out how it got to that point. how do you stand up, shout, and kill 13 americans? that was what a lot of time was spent negotiating and arguing over, and finally we thought we had enough to go forward with the report. >> does your report show that perhaps not as much progress has been made as you believe? >> at a lot of progress has been made in connecting the dots, with the establishment of a national counter-terrorism center and a director of national intelligence.
i am convinced that if a those two organizations existed prior to 9/11, we would have been able to stop the attacks of 9/11. but this case shows that the work isn't finished. these are two separate agencies, to great agencies, the -- two great agencies, the department of defense and the fbi, that acted negligently. it was not intelligent, with no sense of urgency when warning lights were flashing. part of this is not only to make sure that we take some of the steps that were recommended, but that the next time somebody serviceere's a fellow member hearing some of the things -- here's a fellow service member saying some of the things that hassan said, that they will act more aggressively.
>> there have been some clear successes. for example, there are examples where federal, state, local law enforcement and intelligence agencies did work together and thwarted terrorism plots. there have been others that were just close calls that we have been surprised by. in this case, however, i do believe it is fair to say that it is eyeing the dots were not connected -- fair to say that the dots were not connected, despite the progress that has been made since 9/11. >> you mention forming a better relationship with the muslim community. that is one of the things you mentioned. a better relationship with the muslim community. how do you expect to balance
that, especially since various muslim communities have objected to the tactics of law enforcement? ofwe've been doing a series hearings and investigations regarding homegrown terrorism for four years, since 2007, and one of the interesting things we heard at one of those meetings, we talked to the leader of a muslim organization and ask if they had any communication with a federal organization, and the answer was the fbi. the fbi has reached out effectively to the muslim- american community. there is a lot of anxiety, understandably, within the muslim community about young people being radicalized.
to not take advantage of opportunities in america, but to become terrorists. that is why there needs to be cooperation between our law enforcement and intelligence community, and the muslim american community. in the department of defense, as far as we can determine, the department of defense is still not prepared to call the enemy what it is. unless you know your enemy and describe it, you're not going to be able to defeat it. the enemy is violent islamic extremism. to me, when you say that, that should not offend muslim- americans, the overwhelming majority of which are patriotic, law-abiding, a muslim-americans. in the department of defense, they have to start being truthful about who the enemy is. >> last question, please. >> hassan has been charged as a lone gunman. in your investigation, did you see any evidence of conspiracy,
what's your transfers to and from pakistan, a broader conspiracy around these attacks? >> there was no evidence that hassan was part of a broader conspiracy. this is what makes these cases, typically, so difficult, except that here, as we said to you, he was open in statements that were radical at walter reed, and the fbi happened to intercept his communication with the terrorist suspects. it just shows the difficulty. our investigation shows that hassan really was a lone wolf. it bears pointing out that people acting alone can be part of this conspiracy just by going on the internet, going in chat rooms.
that is part of an attempt -- how do we fight the ideology of violent islamic extremism? one of the things we have to try to do, and we're doing some of it now, is to intervene, to try to present the other side, if you will, to people trying to become part of a larger conspiracy even though they are acting alone. >> in general, what we found through our investigation into homegrown terrorism is get the -- is that the individual is frequently inspired by al-qaeda or by other violent islamic leaders, but not directed by them. now, that can happen on occasion, but that is the more common pattern that we see.
to me, to go back to a point i made earlier, what is so frustrating in this case is that this is not the lone wolf operating with no one aware of his existence or his communication with a known terrorist suspects. -- suspect. this was an individual who was open about the fact that he has radicalized, who said outrageous statements in front of the entire class of military officers, and yet he was promoted. it is just astonishing, and very troubling. >> thank you. >> thank you. .
for a complete schedule on line, go to c-span.org. where you can scr our schedules e-mails to you. >> sunday, on book tv's indepth, author and columnist, the founder of the american spectator magazine, has written over half dozen books. join our three-hour conversation with your e-mails, phone calls, and tweets. live sunday at noon eastern on c-span 2. >> now, the arabic language news challenge hosts a panel discussion on the political and
and political ramifications of this potential outcome we have a distinguished panel of decision makers and scholars from the region and beyond. and i will start from my left. gentlemen, welcome. is a nuclear iran inethable? that is is the genie out of the bottle? let's start from my left. quick answer so that we can get the ball rolling. >> i believe, yes.
for two major reasons. one, because a lot of the threat ning for military options, significantly have been mentioned and have been said clearly. and the second thing, which i think iran has been completed all the technical for developing the weapons. >> i think there's still a chance to avoid that situation. and as we are still in a position where we are negotiating with iran in a form which has established itself as being somewhat productive in the e-3 plus three, i think we should use every opportunity to reach a goal on the diplomat path. and this is what we have to do. >> i would pose the question in another way. what if iran doesn't have nuclear weapons? and i think that would be an alternative that always should work very hard for, because the area cannot afford to have the kind of competition that might
rise with a nuclear empowered iran. >> let me talk about nuclear technology. i think we have to make a distinct differentiation between a nuclear weapon and using nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. iran definitely has now the nuclear technology and says that it is going to be using it for peaceful purposes. but overall, as turkey, we are against nuclear weapons in our region. >> we're not talking about nuclear research for peaceful reasons. >> the short answer is an iran with nuclear weapons is not inevitable. i don't believe it's clear that iran has made the decision to go 100% of the way to actually have nuclear weapons. it's quite possible, for example, that the iranians have decided to go 80 or 90% of the
way to become a so-called threshhold nuclear state in the belief that they could derive most of the benefits without incurring most of the costs. so i don't think it's inethable. i think it's inevitable that they would like to get close to it. there's obviously thing that is we will discuss here that could be done to interrupt a process. and there's one other complication. when we say iran, there's a big difference between this iran with certain capabilities and a very kind of iran having certain capabilities. so part of the question also has to be, is this the current type of iran that we see, is that inevitable, or could that change and would that make us feel differently about its capabilities. >> some of you know that the program is old. it began during the shah. and now we have a great deal of clan destine activities on the part of the iranians. the facilities, the recent
facility that was uncovered by the americans and french. so we're talking about a country that is bent on having at least the infrastructure of a nuclear weapon. maybe like germany or japan, having the ability but not necessarily putting it together. but that certainly is worrisome for the neighborhood, for the turks, for the saudis, and for the iraqis. for the three of you who live in the neighborhood of iran, can you afford to live in the shadow of a nuclear iran given this particular regime? >> well, our position is very clear. i think it is the right of every sorne nation to own technology and use it for peaceful purposes. but when it comes to nuclear weapons we don't want nuclear weapons in our region. and it is very important for the countries to sign up for the nonproliferation treaty and also follow the obligations of that treaty. and in our region we have countries which have not yet
signed it and which are suspected to have nuclear weapons. we want a region free of nuclear weapons. that's our very strong position. and we will be against any country which will try to develop nuclear weapons. >> iran signed the npc in 1968 and there's a history of clan destine activities. can you, someone from saudi arabia, afford to live in the shadow of a nuclear iran under this particular regime which pursues sirn policies worrisome to your government? >> one of the iranies is that including signing the agreement, iran also presented to the united nations in 1974 a proposal to make the middle east free of nuclear weapons. and according to official iranian policy until now they hold to that position. but they continue to undertake these uninspected activities,
and that is why they have faced this worldwide sanction on their program. and the kingdom has always stood for the zone-free of weapons of mass destruction. and that is the only alternative in the area. the elephant in the room of course when we talk about that is israel. and that is where the issue takes on an added complexion which must be included in the discussion. >> absolutely. >> because israel with a nuclear weapon is dangerous. and has threatened in the past to use it. and so it is from that context that we must discuss a zone free of weapons of mass destruction that applies to all in the area. because when you level the playing field, you can ask everybody to play. >> just one final thing. iran is technically in violation of the npd.
right? >> you cannot confirm it. >> what do you mean? >> it says that there are facility that is the iranians did not inform of their existence. there are certain activities that they have not been informed of. >> that's true. but when you acquire enrichment technology, don't normally enrichment technology is used and it is not that threshhold to go from civilian to militerized. it's a matter of time. just give more time for enrichment. >> ok. i want to move to, again, talking about the people from the region. what are you doing individually or collectively to deal with this issue? or you the saudis and the turks and the iraqis and others, are waiting for outsiders to deliver you from this nightmare, if you will?
>> iran is our neighbor and we have good relations and we have there is a huge misunderstanding. diplomacy and engagement is going to be the best way to overcome this issue. marginalizing iran more and more or cornering them more and more, with threats and in a way words or vocabulary or approach which is kind of downgrading them is not going to give any solution out of this. that's why behaving actively from the very beginning, we are in very close touch with p-5 cluss countries -- >> i want to talk about that. >> and also we have together with brazil and iran made a declar ration about the special arrangements already prepared by
the vienna group, so to say. so diplomacy, engagement. these will be the key words to deal with this issue. >> as i said, the kingdom is very much proposing the zone free of weapons of mass destruction. and that's a uniformed arab position. >> but forgive me. this has been on the table, been thrown out by the arabs forever. and no takers. the israelis didn't care for it and the iranians don't care for it. >> i disagree. in new york, that proposition took front position and was agreed to by all the countries that signed the npt. and there is a decision by that group to hold a conference in 2012 on the issue. now, the p 5 plus 1 have issued sanctions which the whole world community has supported. but i don't think that will get us anywhere. i would rather have us
concentrate on this zone free of weapons of mass destruction and add to it proproviseos. one, for rewards schemes for the countries that join giving them technical and economic support in their civilian nuclear development. and a nuclear security umbrella. and the other one, a sanctions regime. and both of them to be guaranteed by the permanent five members of the security council. and the sanctions regime would have diplomatic and economic sanctions but will also include a military sanction clause in it. a country that does not join the zone free of weapons of mass destruction will have to face potential military sanctions. >> ok. quickly, definitively, if iran's muke clear policy doesn't change, that this will create a new dilemma of the entire region.
and this is something which is taken by the international communities to solve the issues. >> we mentioned, this is for richard and mr. gutenberg. there's a view in the middle east that iran's neighbors are either excluded or not fully informed about the discussion between the p-5 plus 1 and iran. is there any truth to that? >> we're all members of the united nations and the p-5 plus 1 more or less evolved out of the united nations as well. so i see a lot of talks going on in between and not only words on one hand, on the side i think there's a strong exchanges of views. regardless of the question that i think there's room for combining certain efforts. at least of talking about combining certain efforts. and not just blaming the one part, where it's helpful or not.
and i think we should be more creative here. not just saying the p-5 plus one. >> approaching that. and that very group. >> well, maybe the germans should be with the six permanent members anyway. >> that's another subject. i think there is room for closer exchange of views at least, not blaming each other. that doesn't bring us to any solution. nevertheless, the dual track approach or the double approach i found i think is still valid. and we haven't come to an end yet. and there's still many diplomatic issues on the table we could use as well as certain sanctions. and i would certainly say as well that there are sanctions still possible. so combining that, combining that with certain ideas, combining that with the overall idea of a nuclear free world
which we share but which is close to an illusion at the moment to fulfill it within the next years to come is i think perspective and open room for creativity and not only blaming each other. >> one of the reasons that the reason complains is that for instance the turkish-brazilian initiative was, quote/unquote dismissed by the united states. what do you say to that? >> i don't believe any diplomatic initiative on its own has any chance of succeeding. i think the iranians largely see diplomacy as a tactic to buy time. i think the real challenge is not the p-5 plus 1 i don't think is going to work. i don't think any turkish nishdive succeed because of the iranian commitment to this program. the only chance we have i think is through enhanced sanctions possibly with selective types of military enforcement to increase the pressure on iran.
and if that doesn't work, then i fear one day we have to come down to what is essentially a binary choice. either we have to learn to live with an iranian nuclear weapon or something close to it with all the costs strategically that that would entail, or we have to use military force to basically in a so-called preventative attack in order to set it back however many years we can. but i don't think we should kid ourselves. the problem with diplomacy is not that regional members maybe don't know every dotted i and crossed the the problem is that the iranian government is not sincere in meeting its obligations in the nuclear realm. it wants to enrich uranium. it is not interested in this in any serious way to produce electricity. let's not kid ourselves. this is not about the iranian right to enrich uranium. this is about a sustained commitment to develop nuclear weapons or to get 90% of the way there. that's what this is about. >> let's go to the audience.
for one question. anybody here in the audience feels strongly that there is an exaggeration about iran's nuclear program, that iran should have, that the world should live with a nuclear iran? >> i just want to know why countries are threatened by a nuclear iran. we just feel it's being instigated and exaggerated by israeli-u.s. policy? >> may i say something? >> quickly. >> i just mentioned that the elephant in the room is israel. and definitely no arab country would like to see israel having nuclear weapons and threatening them with it. it's not just iran. it's any country in the area, as the minister has said. that having nuclear weapons is something that is unacceptable to the people of the area. so it is not just iran and
israel. but all the whole area should be devoid of any efforts to develop nuclear weapons. and that's why the zone free of weapons of mass destruction is so essential and so in my view very workable. because there are other zones for free of weapons of mass destruction. they can be emlated. and put in practice. >> we'll come back. just a second. >> i think the last question raised an important point about why people are so concerned about an iranian nuclear program. there's good reason to be concerned. iran is not a status quo power. iran is an imperial power. it seeks to reshape this region in its own image.
look what it's doing in lebanon, look what it's doing in gaza. iran is not content to be a normal nation state. it's the largest state supporter of terrorism in the world. again, an iranian nuclear program would simply give iran much greater freedom to promote its foreign policy ends in the way it chooses to carry out a foreign policy. it would also place this region on a knife's edge. imagine the next time when an israeli-hezbollah confrontation. imagine the potential for escalation if you had an iranian nuclear program in the context of israel's nuclear program. if iran gets nuclear weapons, does anyone in this room seriously think that several other countries will not want to get nuclear weapons, including several represented up here? the middle east i would think has shown itself to be dangerous and unstable enough the way it is. adding an iranian nuclear
program and all the repercusions it would have would take the most dangerous, unstable part of the world and place it on steroids. this has treemeds strategic consequences which we should not underestimate. >> i would like to underlike that because it has its intellectual image just to fingerpoint towards israel in that regard and just to put the argument toward iran is i think just not fair. it's the outcome of that very issue that is the biggest concern. and the nuclear, the possible nuclear race we're talking about has just emerged out of the question of iron. i haven't heard it before that way. it hasn't happened. and we're not talking about just the respective countries sitting around this panel here. but different other countries as well. so this is also european concern we're having and this is not resolved by finger pointing. >> israel is an undeclared
nuclear power. if iran develops a nuclear power, what would that do to the balance of power in the region? >> i don't think it would change the fundamentals. what it would do is detract significantly from stability in terms of it would make iran i believe though much more assertive. if iran felt it could act with impunity because it had nuclear weapons providing a sort of strategic shield, why do we think iran would show strategic restraint? that towled to me would be an illusion. so it would fundamentally affect the regional balance of forces and it would again make the middle east far less stable. >> the united nations security council declared four different sanction packages for iran so far. with all my respect saying diplomacy will not work but sanctions prove not working as well. were we able to refrain iran
from the program? no. are they continuing the program? yes. so here this is very important to have a distinction. which is, just from one of my backgrounds, which is engineering, what you do about enriching urinium here is you have a sent fuge and you have a raw material. the more you turn it, the more enriched uranium you have. if you just rotate it for a short amount of time, you have a fuel for nuclear plants. if you rotate it for a longer time, then you have a raw material for a nuclear weapon. that's the difference. that's the matter of how long you just spin the sent fuges. so it is very difficult to make a decision based on only having those in place so far. so but we are trying to say here is, it is very important for countries to have equal opportunity to have access to nuclear technology. when we look 50 years, 100 years
ahead from now on, we should not think about a world where only a handful number of countries have the exclusive technology and others don't have it. we don't want to end up in a situation where we have and have nots later on. but then, if there is really a fear, if there is a threat, and if this perception of threat is real, then we should work on it through communication. one side of the sanctions we believe is that have not worked and will not work. >> let me digress a little bit. the theme is new realities. and when we set up this panel discussion, this was long before the events in tunisia, egypt, yemen, and what have you. in terms of priority, you know, we're talking about living in the shadow of iran. in terms of priority, given what's taken place in egypt, tunisia, yemen, what is the priority of a nuclear armed iran
compared to the immediatesy of the events in cairo, and others? >> from germany. >> from all perspectives, from my perspective it's hard to compare those issues. there may be lengthened between certain topics. but i think it's, it would be much easier to clearly compare them. the thing we're talking about here, the iranian issue, is part of a year-long discussion already and also a question of how to buy time and other things. those are relevant events at the very moment, very worrisome, a big concern for all of us. and also, let's say a destabilizing, a potential destabilizing part of the region where iran plays a certain role. but this is maybe the link. but the iranian nuclear issue i think we have to depart that from the current issues we see. >> and the reason i ask is if you're a decision maker in
europe or wherever, what makes you spend sleepless nights? let's mull it for a minute and go to the others. >> the short answer is both. as a policy maker, you don't have the luxury of choosing what comes into your in-box. you have to deal with what comes into your in-box. and nowadays both of these issues as well as several others are there. >> let's go to the audience. >> do you really believe that force is a viable option given the recent engagements of the united states? >> i do believe that force is a serious option. the kinds of forces the united states has largely used in iraq and then afghanistan is very heavy on army and marines. most scenarios that i've seen involving dealing with iran would involve largely air and
naval forces. which is not to say it wouldn't be difficult. it wouldn't be costly. force could also be used in multiple ways. you could use force in terms of sanctions strengthening libe was used against iraq 20 years ago after the iraqi invasion of kuwait and force was authorized and used to enforce the sanctions. you could use force to attack known nuclear installations. obviously you can't attack unknown nuclear installations. and also, you can't always destroy what you can't attack. so i think we have to assume that any military attack on iran would accomplish certain things, it would set back the nuclear barack obama of iran. i don't think any of us can say with certainty exactly how much it would achieve. we obviously don't know how iran would retaliate. but i believe it's a safe bet that iran would retaliate in several ways. again, i think anyone who has analyzed the use of force says
this is a potentially costly and richly option. anyone who has analyzed living with an iran nuke -- nuclear iran says this is costly. we want to avoid getting to this place even if the purpose of the conversation is to say if we can't, then what do we do. >> we will discuss the military option in a minute. anybody has a burning question? >> i would like to ask, let's think the unthinkable. if an egypt the government falls like we've seen in tunisia, what impact would that have on the regimes let's say in your countries and on the region in general? do you think that democracy is even more destabilizing than a
nuclear iran? >> what can i say. >> let me go back to something that was mentioned earlier about making a fuss about israel and as being recent. so if you would look at the records of the united nations you would see that the arab countries have been fussing about israel's possession of nuclear weapons for maybe about 40 years. and the other thing i would say is that finger pointing is happening the other way. it is the finger pointing that is taking place now that really encourages all to go for a zone free of weapons of mass destruction. in my view, that is the only option we have ahead of us. because without it, we live in constant danger not just from israel and iran but from any other country that may see that with both these countries having nuclear weapons they would wish to go that route.
and on the egyptian situation, frankly i don't see anything now that i can say about it. it is a situation that is in flux. that's a diplomatic answer. right? >> let me just continue. and what's wrong with a diplomatic answer? the first nation state in the world. and i think there are assets within egyptian society and within the egyptian government and leadership that should not be discounted because of what is happening today in egypt. and whether democracy is more, how did you describe it? [inaudible] more destabilizing than a nuclear iran. i don't know. saudi arabia doesn't have nuclear weapons and it doesn't have democracy.
anybody would try to top that one? ok. anybody with a burning question? state your name, please. >> i wanted to ask the series that if iran does get a nuclear weapon, then the region and the countries in the region will feel that they must also get nuclear weapons. so i would like to ask if that's true, i mean, do you feel that your countries would have to get nuclear weapons? and leading on to that, do you feel that the support at the moment from the u.s. and other countries for civil nuclear programs in the region are preparation force that possibility? understand. and definitely yes more and more >> well, i think the answer is countries in the region will try to own nuclear weapons because that it may be easy to they will try to balance out what has already happened.
so that's really a big, big threat for the whole region. knowing that region has already many difficulties, many conflicts, many frozen or hot problems going on and on top of this, if we have more and more nuclear weapons in the region, it may bring disastrous consequences. so that's why from the very beginning we are very, very clear and we are very harsh on countries who could or are inclined or who have already nuclear weapons. >> but she's right. the countries in the region are pursuing nuclear programs now and are investing in this. now, they say for peaceful purposes, but come on. that is what iran is saying. >> i think it's very, very important. that's why i mentioned npt from the very beginning. i think having aut on my, having very open and transparent processes is going to be very
important. and then here we have to rely on international cooperation and we have to rely on the capabilities of international agencies. and we have to urge the countries to be very transparent. >> the kingdom of saudi arabia has started a program on developing its own nuclear energy requirements and options. and this is a generational issue that will take us a long time to go. the kingdom of saudi arabia has also announced that it will not go for nuclear weapons. so i would throw back at you another theory than the one that you have thrown at us. and that theory is that we all have a zone free of weapons of mass destruction where the proviseos that i mentioned before as a rewards scheme and the sanctions scheme are empowered within that zone. in my view, that is a more applicable theory than the other options that you presented.
>> quickly. quick answer because i want to go back to richard. he is shaking his head. >> also engage in a nuclear [inaudible] also take a measure that is not going to enrich the uranium which is completely safe to come to that threshhold. of course iran is developing a nuclear power not to counter the gulf states because they don't need. it will take what you call a huge destablization in the region. and of course that can encourage the other gulf or regional states to pursue the nuclear options. but the question today is really , this is what your question is, we have to look for realities. i think reality today, u.s. today doesn't have a real policy
on middle east policies and this is what we are facing today. collective policy, you cannot have stability in the regions where you explemt towards iran and not the others. very important is to take this collectively in the regions and to make a complete free zone for wmd. >> we get back to you after this break. you were shaking your head. >> i don't believe the iranian program is a narrow response to the israeli nuclear weapons capability. iran has its own regional ambitions. i expect it has noticed the united states used military force against iraq but not against north korea.
iran has made its own strategic decisions about the validity of a nuclear weapons program. i think it goes way beyond israel. i don't think there's any chance for a nuclear weapons free zone until peace is firmly established with everyone in the region and israel felt secure. the last i checked that is not in the immediate future. and the reality is the time line of iran's nuclear program is moving far far far faster than any diplomacy be it about a nuclear weapons free zone or even the p-5 plus 1. that's the danger. the hope that whether it's regional diplomacy or more narrow diplomacy is going to solve this problem is unlikely because 24/7 the iranians are busy in their laboratory with their sentry fuges. >> richard seems to think that it's not going to happen soon. i think it's not going to happen soon because the united states and the western powers don't
want it to happen soon. not because israel doesn't have the security that it seeks. because it could be an incentive for israel and the arab countries to reach the kind of peace that we are all seeking. if you have the zone with the sanctions regime and the rewards regime attached to it. and it is from that context i think that the zone should be an issue that takes press dense over other alternatives when it comes to the issue of nuclear threats in the area or between iran and israel and the other arab countries in the area. >> quickly. >> very quickly. but just taking the case that the surprising case that israel would make, what will give the confidence that iran may follow? what gives it the confidence that pakistan may follow? what gives it the confidence? i just would like to believe in that confidence, but i just would like to have a definition
of it. >> if i may. >> please go ahead. >> there should be a rewards regime and a sanctions regime with the zone. and the sanctions regime to include military options against any country in the area that does not become a partner in the zone. and that seeks to develop nuclear weapons. that is more of an acceptable alternative than any unilateral military action to be undertaken either by rails or by the united states. so we want to avoid. >> absolutely. >> so that is why if there is such a zone with such a sanctions regime attached to it, whether it is iran, saudi arabia, israel, turkey. if any of those countries would seek to get nuclear weapons then they would have to face the world community as a military option against them. >> the problem is there is no world community when it comes to these options. >> why not? >> if there were a world community, iran would not be where it is. iran is where it is because the
sanctions are not nearly tough enough. and if the united states did ever want to use military force, there would not be a world community backing it. the united states would have to do this sort of thing with virtually no international backing. we don't have a world community on these issues. and if we in a sense talk about this aspirationally, my concern is we're going to get distracted. we have a lot of train metaphors here. this train is moving very quickly. >> the genie out of the bottle. give us one from the middle east. >> i don't think it is competely out of the bottle. and your first question was is it inevitable? i think the answer is no. i think there's still time. we don't know everything about iranian decision making and therefore we know there are certain debates there and certain calculations. increased sanctions could have effect. i doubt it but diplomacy could have effect. there are military options and so forth.
so i don't think it's inevitable because that to me is simply too defeative gisten the consequences. >> is it because you think that it is not feasible that is not going to happen? but sanctions will reach that after the la boryuss diplomacy by the united states and other powers. so if such labor can be put into reaching agreement on sanctions, why not put that labor and that time and effort into a step that will go beyond these sanctions and eliminate the issue from the beginning? why not make the attempt? >> because, again, the time lines of iran's nuclear programs are far far shorter or faster than the time lines of what the diplomacy, be it about sanctions or about nuclear weapons free zones can be expected to be seen. >> you are now proposing that that will also go for diplomacy as you said, that the time line is too short. are you advocating that there should be a military strike now?
>> no. i think there's possibility to bring about political change within iran which is something we haven't talked about. but i do not believe -- >> and that is going happen through diplomacy or what? >> [inaudible] >> all right. one question from the audience. >> just to follow along this wonderful conversation, let's be honest with ourselves. if the current iranian regime was considered an ally of the united states and israel, would we be having this debate? and would there be any train to follow? thank you. >> speaking for myself, i think it would be a fundamentally different conversation. on one level the world talks about nonproliferation as a global absolute. but realistically, we distinguish. it may not be pleasant, it may
not be a comfortable fact, but the world reacted differently say to india than it would to iran. i would say for good reason given india's a democracy, given that it does not support terrorism and so forth. so if switzerland tomorrow, given where we are, found out had a fairly advanced nuclear program, i think the world's reaction would be different. so again, you have a legal framework which argues one size fits all but in the real world, the foreign policy and diplomacy, we make distinctions. and there is a distinction. we are more concerned about iran than we are about some other potential prolive rans including japan because iran is a very different kind international actor. >> i do agree. but the united states has lived with a nuclear pakistan. americans call it including people who work in your institute would say pakistan is the most dangerous country. it has more than 100 nuclear war heads. part of their territory is not
under the control of the government in car atchi. in a sense -- islam bad, i'm sorrifplt what would you say to that? >> i think that the world and the united states do pay -- i fear will pay potentially an extraordinary price for the realities of the north korean and the pakistani nuclear programs because the world i believe has made mistakes in allowing certain things to happen does not mean we should basically now base our foreign policy on repeating mistakes. i don't believe they ought to be, if you will, positive precedents. we ought to learn from these. because, again, the risk that a nuclear north korea and pakistan pose to the world i would argue is extraordinary. and why should we add to it? >> i guess the question to richard. >> sure. >> we should have both of you at dinner together i'm sure.
but let's do it quickly. i have some questions, please. >> from that scenario that i heard now, i would assume that there should be conversation within that framework of military action against pakistan and north korea. because it is extraordinarily dangerous situation there. but i don't see any talk of that. and there shouldn't be talk of that. >> first, in the case of north korea there was active conversation of it by the united states, people like me were involved in the debate and i think there were moments where military force should have been used against north korea and i believe the world would be a far better place if it had been used. now, north korea has reached a point where quite honestly the use of military force, the cost of that will probably prohibtive. in the case of pakistan there were some extra complications but i do believe the united states and the world were too lax, too per misive. and again, if there is a mixture, if you will of terrorism and nuclear materials, that dangerous mixture is more likely to come from pakistan in
our lifetime than anywhere else. >> nightmare scenario. >> the wikileaks documents show that the arab gulf states are not only extremely concerned about iran's nuclear program but essentially they would support an american strike to oblit rate that option from iran. what would you say to that? >> i would say that wikileaks is what it says, leaks. and, as such, they're incomplete, selectively published, and chosen at random rather than expressing a continuous and a buildup of diplomacy and politics and so on. so i would reserve judgment on what happened on there. and rather put my faith in the public policy of those countries and how they state those policies. >> one final. i'm told by the powers that be i
should go back to the audience. >> thank you very much. i would like to make an intervention. but actually, after listening to the last answer to the last question, let me pick up with your in box. i think it's very nice to hear that if toward a different regime was a friend of the united states and israel, you would be looking at it differently. i take that as from an arab state perspective, i take that as a big insult. because the insult is the 2003 0 million people you're totally forgetting about their perspective. i think it's very important we should learn from our mistakes. we should learn lessons. and i think what's happening, and as much as my relationship with you personally how much i like you and respect you, i got worried with that answer because that gives a lot of disrespect to the arab states. and i think we should be respective because from their perspective, i think israel is
an issue. we want peace with israel. we put something in front of israel. we should be working much harder because we're not getting answer answer. but as people, and again. >> is there a question there? >> yes. >> make it short, please. >> the in box. if you forget the people on the street, what's happening today and what's going to be on once you hit iran or israel hits iran and how it's going to come out and hit people, i love the leaks but the leaks shows the difference between official and nonofficial. now, the majority are nonofficial. that's where the world is. >> i think we got the point. richard, go ahead. ar i think you make a good point and i will surprise you and agree with you. the wickileaks purportedly represent what officials are thinking in certain countries. and my reaction to that is it's one thing for officials to tell the united states something privately but will they necessarily be prepared to say
those things publicly and will they be able to carry the day if there was massive opposition from their own public? i think if the united states or israel were to use military force against iran it would be highly unpopular in the arab street. so i don't necessarily assume that governmental statements of support would necessarily hold in those sorts of circumstances. the street does matter. and possibly because of events in recent days the street now matters more in the arab world than it's ever mattered before. historically, the street has been exaggerated. for the most part. but it's possible now the street has a very different dynamic and ability to mobilize itself. >> let's ask the question. it is the 11th hour ow the day after iran develops the nuclear weapon. containment or military option. let's say iran was attacked
either by the united states or israel. these are the only two powers. we're nout talking about switzerland here. how is iran likely to react? how is iran likely to react? will iran react in a conventional way? will iran react by resorting to warfare? short answer. and let's go this way. >> well, as unpredictable results from the iranian is going to attack israelis and u.s. forces in the gulf and the oceans or is going to involve the gulf states with it. and it's become more complicated and serious issues. and devastating for both sites. >> i think both is possible and i think the region is on fire. and we will have a european discussion how to be involved. and this is a sheer disaster. coming back to what i initially said. let's try to avoid it
diplomatically. >> i believe that iran would strike back whatever it will throughout the globe and find convenient targets to do that. >> your country will be a defining line. >> my country and other countries. i think all countries will be on the firing line. and iran has assets throughout the world. i call them steel claws that it can use to serve its own purposes, whatever they wish. >> what will be the view from ankara? you have common borders with iran. >> i think this skeven air yo, which is quite extreme. so the best would be to do things now to avoid such a scenario. >> that works for diplomats like you but there's a lot of talk about military strike. >> we can let people make scenarios and impressions and so forth. but as governments it's our duty now to resolve the issues surrounding the subject through diplomatic channels as soon as
possible. and on the other hand, the secret of diplomacy hire is trying to approach in a way with an element of respect in this approach and on one hand you are trying to have this but on the other hand there are sanctions continuously coming in. and when the element of respect gets out of the picture, then diplomacy gets into trouble. so i think it's very important to take iran as a legitimate sovereign nation to be approached with respect and to talk with them, to talk openly. >> you mentioned i think earlier hezbollah. would iran open up the front against israel, for instance, if israel attacks hezbollah and lebanon? >> the short answer is maybe. as his royal high nest said, iran has a wy variety of assets at its command. it's possible they would also interfere with the flow of oil, that would have repercusions for the world economy. you know, i've participated in
these scenarios. they're not pretty. there's no way to game this out where everyone is better off. everyone is worse off from these skin earyos. so, again, it forces the conversation on steps that could be taken to avoid it. i also hope iranians take conversations like this that they would be worse off and would rethink the costs and benefits that would accrue to them if they continue beyond a certain point. they would be enormous losers as well. >> as they say, all good things must come to an end. i would like to thank our distinguished panel. i would like to thank our audience here. i would like to thank our viewers all over the world. ♪ ♪
>> in his weekly address, president obama previews a speech he will give next week to the u.s. chameler of commerce in which he calls on businesses to innovate, invest, and hire workers to help stimulate the economy. he is followed by the republican address given by committee member jeb hencer ling who criticizes the policies which he says have created unsustainable deficits. >> this week we received a report on jobs and unemployment that told us we're continuing to move in the right direction. but we need to get there faster. in the short term, the bipartisan tax cut we passed in december will give an added boost to job creation and economic growth. it's a tax cut that is already making americans' page checks a little bigger and given businesses more incentive to invest and hire. but ultimately our true measure of progress has to be whether every american who wants a job
can find one, whether the jobs available pay well and offer good benefits. whether people in this country can still achieve the american dream for themselves and for their children. that's the progress we're after. to get there, we have to realize that in today's global competitive economy, the best jobs and newest industries will take root in the countries with the most skilled workers, the strongest commitment to research and technology, and the fastest way to move people, goods, and information. toward the future, america needs to outeducate, outinnovate, and outbuild the rest of the world. on thursday, i went to penn state university whose students and researchers are poised to lead the wayen innovation and job creation. they're taking up the challenge we've issued to scientists and engineers all across the country. if you assemble teams with the best minetteds in your field and focus on tackling the biggest obstacles to providing america with clean affordable energy we'll get behind your work. your government will support your research.
the folks in pennsylvania have focused on designing billingding to save more energy, from lighting and windows to heating and cooling. this won't just cut down on energy pollution. it will save us billions on our energy bills. most of all, discovering new ways to make buildings energy efficient will lead to new jobs and new businesses. over the last two years we have seen a window manufacturer in maryland boost business by 55 percent. a lighting company in north carol na hired hundreds of workers. a manufacture saw business increase by $1 million. all we did is provide some tax credits and financing opportunities. that's what we want to do going forward so it's profitable for american businesses to sell the discoveries made by scientists at penn state and other hubs of inno vasion. if businesses sell these discoveries and sell windows and insulation, they'll hire more workers. and that's how americans will prosper. that's how we will win the
future. our government has an obligation to make sure that america is the best place on earth to do business, that we have the best schools, the best incentives to innovate, and the best infrastructure. next week, i will see that kind of infrastructure when i visit michigan, a place where high speed broadband is connecting a small town to the larger world. supporting businesses with this kind of 21st century infrastructure and cutting edge innovation is our responsibility. but businesses have a responsibility too. if we make america 2 best place to do business, businesses should make their marge here in america. they should set up shop here and hire all workers and pay decent wages and invest in the future of this nation. that's their obligation. that's the message i will be bringing to american business leaders at the chamber of commerce on monday. that government and businesses have mutual responsibilities. and that if we fulfill these obligations together, it benefits us all. our workers will succeed, our nation will prosper, and america
will win the future in this century just like we did in the last. thanks. >> hi, i'm congressman jeb hencering of texas. i serve as the number two republican on the house budget committee. something you may have seen me last week when i had the opportunity to ask the president of his new budget would once again triple the national debt and dramatically increase the cost to government to 25% of the economy, up from its traditional 20%. you may recall that the president declined to answer the question last week but he certainly answered it this week by submitting a new budget that does exactly what i feared. the numbers in his budget are simply breath taking. a record 3.8 trillion in spending. more than $2 trillion in new job-crushing taxes. not to mention a tripling of the national debt on top of the largest deficit in our nation's history. interest payments alone on this debt will set us back roughly $6 trillion over the next decade.
that's about $50,000 per household. you're probably like me and believe in america you ought to work hard today so your children can have a better, more prosperous tomorrow. but with this budget, it's like washington has said, let's let government live easier today so our children have to work harder tomorrow. you know, it's about this same time last year president obama and democrats in congress promised that if we pass their $1 trillion stimulus bill and grew big government f government that jobs would be created meedly. they said unemployment would remain below 8%. republicans stood on principles, offered a better alternative. that according to an analysis developed by the president's own economic advisers would have created twice the jobs at half the cost. the democrats chose to go it alone and jam through their stimulus. what did the american people get? a bill for $1.2 trillion and 3 million more jobs lost. americans are still asking,